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Century II resource center

A resource of information about the Century II Performing Arts and Convention Center in Wichita. Send suggestions for additions to bob.weeks@gmail.com.

This document has three sections:

The last update was Tuesday, July 14, 2020.

Websites and online

Documents

News and opinion

  • July 13, 2020 Wichita Eagle: Wichita board endorses historic preservation status for Century II, former library
    The Wichita Historic Preservation Board on Monday nominated the Century II Performing Arts building for state and national historic status, despite separate requests to delay the decision from the city manager and from local business interests that want to tear down and replace it. The board also nominated the former Central Wichita Public Library building for historic status, which could serve as a roadblock to tearing down the buildings and allow them to receive state and federal preservation grants.
    Link to article: https://www.kansas.com/news/politics-government/article244191212.html.

  • July 10, 2020 Wichita Business Journal: Riverfront Legacy Master Plan: Hold off talking historic labels for Century II, old library
    The private organizations that created the Riverfront Legacy Master Plan group have asked the Wichita Historic Preservation Board to defer consideration of Century II and the old Central Library as nominees for state and national historic places registers. Both items are on the agenda for Monday afternoon’s meeting of the preservation board. The buildings, each built in the late 1960s, sit in the downtown area east of the Arkansas River being discussed for up to $1.2 billion in public and private development. Both would be razed in the plan, which has been dormant since Covid-19 postponed a public meeting scheduled for late March. In a letter made public Friday, the organizations — Downtown Wichita, the Greater Wichita Partnership, Visit Wichita, the Wichita Community Foundation and the Wichita Regional Chamber of Commerce — offered three reasons for delaying consideration. They argue consideration of the historic designations shouldn’t take place during the pandemic and that the community deserves a “fully involved process” to weigh the future of the area. They also say a historical designation for Century II could affect Music Theatre Wichita’s ability to attract performances meeting industry standards. Finally, they questioned what they called an urgent need for the designations, saying there are no imminent plans to tear down the buildings.
    Link to article: https://www.bizjournals.com/wichita/news/2020/07/10/riverfront-stakeholders-ask-preservation-board.html

  • July 10, 2020 Wichita Eagle: Save Century II petition has nearly 17,000 signatures; could force vote on demolition
    Organizers of a petition initiative to block the city from destroying Century II and the former downtown library will hand deliver nearly 17,000 signatures to City Hall on Friday, a move that could ultimately preserve Wichita’s skyline and wrest control of a key riverfront site from downtown booster organizations looking to redevelop the area. The ordinance proposed in the petition by a group called Save Century II would prevent the city government from demolishing any historically significant city-owned buildings without a public vote, specifically naming the Century II Performing Arts & Convention Center and the former Wichita Central Library building.
    Link to article: https://www.kansas.com/news/politics-government/article244081347.html.
    Similar stories: KWCH: Save Century II committee presents 17,000-signature petition to Wichita mayor.
    KSN: Save Century II petition delivered to Mayor Brandon Whipple.
    Wichita Business Journal: Grassroots campaign delivers 17,300 signatures to City Hall in effort to save Century II.
    KFDI: Save Century II Gets Over 12,000 Petition Signatures.

  • June 24, 2020 Wichita Eagle: Defund police? Privatize Century II? Wichita braces for $50 million city budget hole
    Wichita’s city leaders are bracing for massive cuts — $50 million — to make up for the revenue shortfall expected through 2022. … To cut costs, the city has instituted a hiring freeze, closed pools for the year and plans to privatize some services such as operation of Century II, its warrant office and the animal shelter. … The coronavirus pandemic appears to have saved Century II — for now. Instead of tearing it down, the city is now considering leasing it to a private operator in a similar arrangement to Sedgwick County’s agreement with ASM Global at Intrust Bank Arena. Wichita would continue to own and maintain Century II, but a private company would manage events and collect earnings. Depending on the profit-share agreement with the operator, the move could save the city more than $2.5 million a year, [City Manager Robert] Layton said.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • June 23, 2020 Wichita Business Journal: As Wichita faces millions in lost revenues, city manager recommends plan to privatize Century II operations
    Not unlike businesses and households across Wichita struggling with the financial fallout of Covid-19, the city is also considering ways to cut costs as it deals with millions in revenue losses as a result of the pandemic. City manager Robert Layton says Wichita is facing a $11.5-million deficit this year, and recommends a slate of measures to help balance the 2020-21 budget. That includes closing the city’s pools and splash pads through summer, decreasing the frequency of mowing and forestry services and a plan to privatize the operations of Century II. “In all likelihood we will work with the private sector and possibly look at a private operator,” Layton said. “I think maybe by bringing in private expertise we can look at a different way of doing business and right sizing, going forward, and getting and taking advantage of national expertise on the new normal for conventions, meetings, community events and facilities.”
    Link to article here.

  • March 5, 2020 Opinion in Wichita Eagle: So Wichita finally landed ‘Hamilton.’ Does that mean Century II is just fine?
    Plenty of folks applauded this week’s news that the Broadway hit “Hamilton” will finally be coming to Wichita. Some are downright giddy – but not necessarily because they’re fans of the hip-hop masterpiece: They see the announcement as evidence that Wichita doesn’t need a new performing arts center and that Century II is just fine, thank you very much.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • March 3, 2020 Wichita Eagle: ‘Hamilton’ coming to Wichita.
    The celebrated musical “Hamilton” will be coming to Wichita, a prospect deemed unlikely a year ago. The American Theatre Guild, the Kansas City group behind the Broadway in Wichita series, announced Tuesday afternoon that it would bring “Hamilton” to Wichita in its 2021-2022 series. The play has been eagerly awaited in Wichita, skipped over for performances until now because of the city’s small market size and stage limitations of Century II, the city’s performing arts center.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • February 24, 2020. KAKE. Company promises more details in riverfront development project.
    The spokesman for a newly-formed LLC said he can’t disclose the investors in the organization, but promises big results for the future of Wichita’s river development. “You and I as taxpayers aren’t paying for it,” said Brian McHughes, spokesman for Penumbra International. “It’ll be in phases.” According to the Secretary of State’s office, Penumbra was formed as an LLC in late January. But McHughes said that’s largely a formality, that the investors with the organization have been working for nearly a year — ever since plans first were developed to demolish Century II.
    Link to article here.

  • February 22, 2020. KFDI. Investment Group Proposes New Uses For Century II.
    A new investment group in Kansas is proposing to spend $1.5 billion to develop new uses for Wichita’s Century II Convention Center. Penumbra International revealed a general plan at a news conference Friday. The group is proposing a 500-room, 40-story convention hotel with retail, dining and recreation facilities. The plan also calls for an aerospace museum, an observation Ferris wheel, an aquarium and other features.
    Link to article here.

  • February 21, 2020. KSN. Private group announces proposal for $1.5 billion Riverfront project.
    A recently formed group, Penumbra International LLC announced a proposal Friday for a $1.5 billion Riverfront project funded by private groups. Their plan included re-purposing Century II into an air and space museum, building a 40-story convention center hotel, aquarium, and more.
    Link to article here.

  • February 21, 2020. KAKE. Company says they’re ready to invest $1.5 billion in Wichita Riverfront, including Kansas’ first skyscraper.
    $1.5 billion in a proposed development in downtown Wichita… That’s the incredible amount of construction and growth a company is vowing to bring here, including a 40+ story hotel. So is it realistic? Or just pie in the sky? Just for some perspective, the Epic Center is currently the tallest building in Kansas, standing 320 feet and 22 stories tall. The proposed hotel would nearly double that.
    Link to article here.

  • February 21, 2020. KWCH: Group’s vague plan for Century II includes $1.5 billion to repurpose building.
    A plan proposed for the future of Century II comes with more questions than answers for the group that says it’s offering $1.5 billion to repurpose the historic building. The group of private investors proposing the plan is called Penumbra International, LLC. The group says its proposal won’t take any tax dollars from the public and includes an aerospace museum, an observation Ferris wheel, a 40-story convention hotel, an aquarium, and more.
    Link to article here.

  • February 12, 2020. The Sunflower: OPINION: Debating the fate of Century II.
    With Century II supporters fighting the Wichita Riverfront planners’ attempts to demolish the performing arts and convention center, Sunflower columnists Katie Smith and Brogan Gillmore debate the fate of the facility.
    Link to article here.

  • February 5, 2020. Wichita Eagle: An inside look at Wichita’s former downtown library; it’s nicer than you remember.
    Supporters of a petition drive to force Wichita to vote on whether to tear down historic buildings have gotten a rare look inside the former Central Library, one of the buildings they’re trying to save from downtown redevelopment. And they like what they saw.
    Link to article here.

  • January 25, 2020. Editorial in Wichita Story: Thinking Outside the Dome. Have you ever flown out of or into Dwight D. Eisenhower National Airport?
    You may do as I do and seek the icon that says you’re home; the identifying feature from the eye in the sky: Century II. For many, Century II has always been there. Others may remember when it was built to commemorate Wichita’s hundredth year. School field trips, car shows, graduations, plays and performances are just a few examples of the many memories we share as a city in the “mothership” that has become more motherly than alien.
    Link to article: https://wichitastory.com/guest-editorial-thinking-outside-the-dome/

  • January 22, 2020. Commentary on Facebook by Russell Arben Fox
    This is a mostly fact-filled contribution to the argument, and all of the points Martin makes specifically about Century II’s size and shape need to be kept in mind. Still, I am waiting for someone, ANYONE, to put meat on the bones of the claim I see here and hear constantly from boosters: that “we compete for many regional conventions [and] every year we lose more events to Oklahoma City, Tulsa, Johnson County, Omaha and even Topeka.” Please, somebody, NAME THOSE CONVENTIONS. Give me data!
    Link to post: https://www.facebook.com/russell.a.fox.9/posts/10162785356485291

  • January 22, 2020. Commentary in Wichita Eagle: Ed Martin: Save Century II… for what?
    Any campaign to save Century II and the former downtown library must answer the question, “Save them for what?”
    Link to archived article: https://web.archive.org/web/20200126203641/https://www.kansas.com/opinion/guest-commentary/article239505863.html

  • January 19, 2020. Commentary in Wichita Eagle: Wichita can’t grow without Century II or a clear plan on how to replace it.
    As of Jan. 11, Century II has served this community for 50 years. Century II on paper may look like it loses money, but all you have to do is look at the economic impact to the Wichita community from events such as the American Bowling Congress, the Miss USA pageants and other national events. Some in city leadership would like to demolish the venue due to its age. The maintenance and appearance are the responsibility of the city and those in charge of overseeing the operation of Century II. The city has chosen to defer maintenance, causing problems for those who attend the events at Century II.
    Link to article: https://www.kansas.com/opinion/opn-columns-blogs/article224768445.html

  • January 19, 2020. Wichita Eagle: Is the Century II Convention and Performing Arts Center building historic, or is it just old?
    That question is now at the center of a battle raging over the future of Century II.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • January 18, 2020. Opinion in Wichita Eagle: The new plan for Wichita’s riverfront is bold but divisive. So settle it with a vote.
    The best way to rebuild that trust is to be upfront and transparent, and to trust voters to decide Wichita’s future. If the city needs a new performing arts center — and signs point to yes — make a plan, make the case, and put it on the ballot, like the measure that replaced the outdated Kansas Coliseum with a new downtown arena. If we’re going to vote on Century II’s fate, there needs to be a proposal for what will happen with it, so voters can make a thoughtful choice, not purely emotional one.
    Link to archived version of article: https://web.archive.org/web/20200119184331/https://www.kansas.com/opinion/editorials/article239318388.html

  • January 17, 2020. The Sentinel: Tax increases on the table in Wichita riverfront design unveiling.
    After months of ‘no comment’ from city officials and downtown boosters, a sales tax increase in officially on the table to pay for the Wichita riverfront development along the east bank of the Arkansas River in Wichita. The Sentinel has been reporting on city officials and development refusal to rule out a sales tax increase since last year.
    Link to article: https://sentinelksmo.org/tax-increases-on-the-table-in-wichita-riverfront-design-unveiling/

  • January 16, 2020. KPTS Television: A live forum for discussion of Wichita’s riverfront development, centering on the city’s planned options for the Century II complex.
    Link to video: https://youtu.be/Pq5P01C7ZP0

  • January 14, 2020. The Sentinel: Tax increases on the table in Wichita riverfront design unveiling.
    A new survey shows voters oppose a tax increase to pay for the Wichita riverfront development project being pushed by downtown business and elected officials. Perhaps even more intriguing, voters also don’t think the riverfront development is a high priority for city council members and the mayor.
    Link to article: https://sentinelksmo.org/voters-oppose-tax-increase-for-wichita-riverfront-development/

  • January 13, 2020. Wichita Eagle: Century II activists launch petition drive; need 12,500-plus signatures to force vote.
    Supporters of an initiative petition to save Century II from destruction came to their kickoff event Monday with 200 yard signs — and left with none. More than that many people stopped by to pick up petitions aimed at forcing City Hall to preserve the 51-year-old structure, targeted for demolition in the Riverfront Legacy Master Plan, details of which will be released Tuesday. The petition proposed by the Save Century II group would prevent the city government from destroying any historically significant city-owned buildings without a public vote, specifically naming Century II and the former library as two buildings that would have to be protected.
    Link to article: https://www.kansas.com/news/politics-government/article239250988.html

  • December 22, 2019. Commentary in Wichita Eagle: Design for new performing arts center should be as bold as Century II.
    Famed architect and city planner Daniel Hudson Burnham once said, “[m]ake no little plans; they have no magic to stir the blood and probably themselves will not be realized … Remember that our children and our grandchildren are going to do things that would stagger us. Let your watchword be order and your beacon beauty. While Burnham has long since passed, his vision remains in the hearts and sight lines of many cities throughout the world. And his adherence to a bold vision has relevance for Wichita today, especially as our community engages with the Riverfront Legacy Master Plan and the future of the east bank of the Arkansas River.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • December 16, 2019 Wichita Eagle: Riverfront Legacy group moves forward with a plan that tears down Century II.
    Century II has been eliminated from Wichita’s skyline in a redesign of the east bank of the Arkansas River in downtown Wichita, replaced by mixed-use buildings and a large “programmable green space” that connects new performing arts and convention centers with the river. That’s the direction the Riverfront Legacy Master Plan coalition wants to go, the group of downtown and business booster organizations decided Monday. The decision was based on months of public engagement and years of studies, group members said.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • December 8, 2019 Wichita Eagle: Michael O’Donnell calls Wichita Riverfront plan a farce to justify razing Century II.
    Sedgwick County’s representative on a committee overseeing a mammoth redevelopment effort on the east bank of the Arkansas River is calling the process a farce, designed mainly to drum up support for tearing down Century II and replacing it with more than $1 billion in new public and private development. County Commissioner Michael O’Donnell says the committee is completely focused on building new convention and performing arts facilities and hasn’t taken a serious look at what it would take to save Century II. O’Donnell represents south Wichita and says the committee isn’t listening to him or to thousands of residents who want to keep the iconic blue-roofed roundhouse that now serves as the city’s municipal auditorium.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • November 24, 2019 Wichita Eagle: Wichita movie theater mogul says he wants to help save Century II — for free.
    Before anyone suggests tearing down Century II, one of Wichita’s most successful entrepreneurs said he’s willing to help find a new use for it — free of charge. Bill Warren, founder of Warren Theatres and longtime vocal protector of Century II, said his experience in real estate and promotion can help the city find a developer that sees the value in the iconic building and could turn it into a destination building that benefits the city.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • November 14, 2019 Wichita Eagle: Five scenarios for Wichita riverfront; only one saves Century II.
    Five proposals released Thursday in the replanning of the east bank of the Arkansas River all envision new performing arts and convention centers to replace Century II at the site. One key feature in all the plans would be the creation of a large open space, similar to an outdoor plaza that was proposed in the 1920s, but never built. All the plans also envision building a new convention center and a new performing arts center. They’d be separate facilities, unlike the Century II which currently serves both functions. And every plan would contain substantial private development of mixed-use buildings with retail stores, office space and apartments.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • October 17, 2019 Wichita Eagle: Century II in limbo as planners craft riverfront proposals for apartments, offices.
    Planners working on redevelopment scenarios for the east bank of the Arkansas River say they will present some proposals that preserve the roundhouse at Century II, and some where it will be torn down. But none of those proposals will recommend continuing to use it as the city’s performing arts center. Planners expect to recommend that the city build a new convention center and a new performance center and maybe convert Century II, which now serves both functions, for some other use.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • September 24, 2019 Wichita Eagle: Planning tour highlights downtown river access, strengths and weaknesses of Century II.
    More pollinating plants to help support butterflies and bees, rooftop greenery, better access for the disabled and parking that’s hidden out of site. Those were among ideas floated Tuesday as community members were invited to give their thoughts on what comes next on the east bank of the Arkansas River in downtown Wichita. The occasion was the first of four “urban explorations” scheduled Tuesday and Wednesday by the Riverfront Legacy Master Plan group, a public-private consortium re-envisioning the area now occupied by the Century II Convention and Performing Arts Center and the WaterWalk.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • September 18, 2019 Wichita Eagle: Group fighting to protect Century II calls it the ’most iconic structure in Wichita.’
    A group of people fighting to protect Century II from what they fear is an effort to tear down the iconic building in downtown Wichita met there Tuesday to advocate for remodeling the structure instead. One of the organizers of the meeting, which was attended by about 100 people, said he believes an international consulting group plans to demolish the 50-year-old convention and performing arts center along the Arkansas River. “Why are we here continuing to debate to save Century II?” said Greg Kite, president of the Historic Preservation Alliance. “The Populous group has obviously been given a directive with respect to eliminating Century II from the master plan. All we need to find out is where is that directive coming from and from whom.”
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • September 18, 2019 Commentary in Wichita Eagle: Riverfront planning is public — and about more than Century II.
    Lately, I’ve been disappointed to hear people dismissing a process that I am co-leading as a member of the Riverfront Legacy Master Plan coalition. This private-public effort is intentionally designed to be open and transparent. So I thought it might be helpful to try and correct some misperceptions.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • September 15, 2019 Wichita Eagle: Wichita Century II supporters fight back against master plan they say will destroy it.
    Led by a woman whose father helped get the Century II built, a citizens’ group has called its first public meeting to try to save the embattled Wichita landmark.Sup porters of the iconic round blue-roofed convention and performing arts center will meet there Tuesday to talk about their efforts to get it named a state historic landmark and to discuss the unique architecture of a building that they see as threatened. At issue is the Riverfront Legacy Master Plan, a $700,000 public and privately funded effort to envision the future of the area around the Century II, the former Central Library and the WaterWalk. The master plan group has hired Populous, an international urban consulting firm, to create the plan. Indications at a July 31 kickoff meeting were that Century II may face the wrecking ball to make way for new convention and performance venues.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • September 2019 KMUW: Wichita Rules Out Renovating Century II For Performing Arts.
    City Manager Robert Layton says recent engineering work confirmed structural limitations that would make the renovation project too costly. As a result, he says the city ruled out that option for upgrading the performing arts facility. “So now it’s a matter of let’s go ahead and determine how we build a new performing arts facility, and how is that prioritized from a financial standpoint,” Layton says. “And then decide, is it possible to reuse the round building.”
    Link to article: https://www.kmuw.org/post/wichita-rules-out-renovating-century-ii-performing-arts

  • July 31, 2019 Wichita Eagle: Consultants call for bold vision on east bank of Arkansas River; C-II may not fit.
    Architects and planners hired to redesign the riverbank area that now holds the Century II convention center and the WaterWalk in downtown Wichita told a standing-room-only crowd of about 300 that now is the time to show bold vision and create a new waterfront for decades to come.
    Link to archived article: https://web.archive.org/web/20190801154516/https://www.kansas.com/news/politics-government/article233347162.html

  • July 30, 2019 Opinion in Wichita Eagle: Attention, ‘Bitchitans’: Speak up now on Century II and Wichita’s riverbank.
    Some Wichita residents make bellyaching an art form, grousing non-stop about anything and everything. (See also: electric scooters, fireworks, road construction.) To watch it in action, scan Twitter or Facebook, eavesdrop at a bar, or read the comments on The Eagle’s website. So when city leaders say they want public opinion on an important topic, you’d think most folks would be eager to share. That’s not always the case.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • July 15, 2019 Wichita Eagle: What to do about Century II? Most Wichita mayor candidates don’t offer firm plans.
    Does the Century II have a future? You wouldn’t know from listening to most of the candidates for Wichita mayor who met in an open forum Monday evening, where they were asked to share their vision for the east bank of the Arkansas River downtown.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • July 2, 2019 Wichita Eagle: Century II or something new? Group seeks answers to Wichita’s riverfront questions.
    A coalition of Wichita boosters working to shape the future of the city’s riverfront has announced its first — tentative — public meeting date. The group says it wants to put the community’s vision for the future of the east bank of the Arkansas River downtown on paper as the Riverfront Legacy Master Plan. A primary focus will be connecting the east bank with the ballpark development on the west bank, downtown and development to the north to the Keeper of the Plains.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • May 2, 2019 KMUW: Pipe Dreams: Effort To Keep Famous Wurlitzer In Wichita Amid Century II’s Uncertain Future.
    A famous Wurlitzer pipe organ has been based at Wichita’s Century II for about as long as the performing arts center has been open. With Century II’s future in question, the organ’s caretakers are working to increase public and city support so the Wurlitzer can remain in Wichita.
    Link to article here.

  • March 31, 2019 Wichita Eagle: Here’s what a new performing arts center in Wichita needs, theater professional says.
    The city’s aging Century II Performing Arts & Convention Center is holding the city back. That’s what studies conducted over the last few years have concluded, and city leaders are currently considering whether to take on the expensive project of building a replacement.
    Link to archived article: https://web.archive.org/web/20190401175343/https://www.kansas.com/entertainment/ent-columns-blogs/keeper-of-the-plans/article228614899.html

  • March 31, 2019 Wichita Eagle: Wichita is the only major city in the region not to get ‘Hamilton’ tour. Here’s why.
    Century II’s stage is technically too shallow — by about 11 feet and 2 inches — for “Hamilton,” said John D’Angelo, director of the city’s Division of Arts and Cultural Services. If Century II got “Hamilton,” it would have to be scaled to fit.
    Link to archived article: https://web.archive.org/web/20190401215520/https://www.kansas.com/entertainment/ent-columns-blogs/keeper-of-the-plans/article227785309.html

  • March 26, 2019 Wichita Eagle: Will developers make big bucks replacing Century II? School board member wants answers.
    A Wichita school board member on Tuesday took on the head of a committee that wants to replace Century II, asking if developers are the ones who stand to gain the most if the city goes forward with building a new performing arts center ’s a lot of emotion in the city right now of distrust,” said school board member Ernestine Krehbiel. “Who is this for? Is there some developer that’s going to make a big buck on this?” She said the prospect of replacing the iconic blue-roofed building “almost feels like a double-cross” because the city hasn’t kept up its maintenance, which in turn has led to high cost estimates to renovate it instead of building new. “It’s the city’s problem that it hasn’t been maintained and that’s another one of those frustrations,” Krehbiel said.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • March 24, 2019 Wichita Eagle: Wichita could gain millions in revenue if it builds a new convention center, officials say.
    Add one more major item to Wichita’s extensive list of downtown projects. Along with the new baseball stadium complex being built ($83 million) and talk of a new performing arts center (expected to be more than $175 million), officials with Visit Wichita want to ensure the convention-center isn’t forgotten. Century II is hampering the city’s efforts to attract new conventions — which need modern, industry-standard facilities — to town, says the convention and visitors bureau.
    Link to archived article: https://web.archive.org/web/20190325165713/https://www.kansas.com/news/local/article227455864.html

  • February 26, 2019 Wichita Eagle: Century II advisory committee calls for new performing arts center, public vote on funding.
    Wichita should build a new performing arts center in the heart of the city, not renovate Century II. And it should move quickly to find a way to pay for it. That’s what the Century II Citizens Advisory Committee told the Wichita City Council on Tuesday. But Wichita Mayor Jeff Longwell said he’s still interested in remodeling Century II, the city’s 50-year-old performing arts center. He also said he would prefer any new performance arts center be privately funded, not paid for by a tax referendum as the committee recommended. And he said a timeline provided by the committee is “not possible.”
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • February 26, 2019 Editorial in Wichita Eagle: Whatever happens with Century II, don’t sell off Wichita’s riverfront.
    The first shots in the Battle of the Blue Roof may have been fired Tuesday, when an advisory committee proposed building a new performing arts center in downtown Wichita. Committee leaders said their proposal has no bearing on Century II, the city’s 50-year-old convention and performing arts center, but it’s hard to imagine it won’t. Building a new performing arts center would mean finding “alternative use options” for Century II or the property on which it stands — and that could be a tough task. Regardless which way the building debate goes from here, we implore city leaders to pledge one thing clearly and decisively: Wichita’s precious downtown riverfront should not be sold off to the highest bidder.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • February 26, 2019 Wichita Eagle: Remodel Century II or build new? City Council to hear plan on home for theater, arts.
    A group tasked with recommending whether the future of Wichita’s performing arts is best served by remodeling space within Century II or building a whole new performing arts center will deliver its findings to the Wichita City Council Tuesday morning. Based on information shared by committee chairwoman Mary Beth Jarvis on Monday, the committee may be leaning toward the latter.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • February 15, 2019 Editorial in Wichita Eagle: Will Century II survey tell city leaders what Wichitans really think? No.
    Later this month a volunteer committee will advise Wichita leaders on what they should do with Century II — whether the city should renovate its iconic round dome or build a new performing arts center. One factor in the group’s recommendation will be the results from an online survey that has circulated over the past few weeks. Officials say they have more than 3,700 responses so far and hope to gather more before the survey closes Thursday. But decision-makers should be careful not to presume too much from the seven-question survey: Though it purports to gauge public opinion on Century II, results will be neither scientifically valid nor representative of the city as a whole.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • January 25, 2019 Century II turns 50, and time is running out to weigh in on its future.
    Tuesday may be one of your last chances to tell the city what you’d like to see for the future of Century II. The city will celebrate Century II’s 50th anniversary next week, as discussions continue about what to do with the iconic downtown dome.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • January 19, 2019 Wichita Eagle: Wichita can’t grow without Century II or a clear plan on how to replace it.
    As of Jan. 11, Century II has served this community for 50 years. Century II on paper may look like it loses money, but all you have to do is look at the economic impact to the Wichita community from events such as the American Bowling Congress, the Miss USA pageants and other national events. Some in city leadership would like to demolish the venue due to its age. The maintenance and appearance are the responsibility of the city and those in charge of overseeing the operation of Century II. The city has chosen to defer maintenance, causing problems for those who attend the events at Century II. The signs of neglect are clear from the outside. The lighted spire that sits atop Century II has not functioned for nearly 10 years. The flower beds that surround it have been left with no vegetation, just wood chips. Kennedy Plaza was in such bad shape it required major patching of the concrete before the River Festival.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • November 10, 2018 Opinion in Wichita Eagle: Century II Citizens Committee wants you to get engaged.
    For the past nine months, 12 dedicated volunteers have been working to understand the needs, aspirations and options for performing arts in our city and recommend a path forward. Your Century II Citizens Advisory Committee was gathered because our region is at a crossroads, seemingly ready to overcome barriers hampering growth. Just as Project Wichita began to help set priorities for transforming our community, our mayor assembled us to represent our fellow citizens in assessing this issue. Our areas of expertise are broad – banking, architecture, facilities management, events, the arts, marketing, law and other fields. We dug into the multiple studies done over the past eight years and gathered input from Century II tenants and users. While sorting through complex and nuanced issues, we learned something very straightforward: the situation is more urgent than any of us realized.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • September 14, 2018 Wichita Eagle: Century II’s days are numbered. But how much are Wichitans willing to spend?
    Century II, at least in its current configuration, is not the downtown centerpiece of the future. That’s the conclusion of an independent citizen committee tasked with studying the issue. The question now, according to the committee: Do a majority of Wichitans feel that same way?
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • September 2018 The Chung Report: Is It Time To Let Go Of Century II?
    Built in the style of legendary architect Frank Lloyd Wright, Century II has been a Wichita landmark for nearly sixty years. Its sand-colored pillars represent the vast, Kansas wheat fields, and the now-iconic blue dome represents the expansive sky. While it’s an architectural icon, many believe Century II’s useful lifespan has come to an end, and it should be heavily renovated — or replaced completely — with a new performing arts and convention center. Others disagree, citing the building’s artistic design, its status as a Wichita landmark and the hefty cost of a new building.
    Link to article: https://thechungreport.com/debating-the-future-of-century-ii/

  • April 4, 2018 Wichita Eagle: County OKs Project Wichita funds, but commissioner questions intentions toward Century II.
    A Sedgwick County commissioner publicly questioned Wednesday whether Project Wichita is a legitimate effort to gather input on the future of the community, or a pretext to generate public support for tearing down Century II and building a new convention and performing arts center. A co-chairman of Project Wichita said Century II is likely to be part of the discussion, but the project’s goal is to take a much broader look at community wants and needs and how to handle them. And he assured the commission that any research done by Project Wichita will be on the up and up.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • February 22, 2018 Wichita Eagle: Raze or renovate? Wichita to ask residents about fate of Century II.
    In late 2016, Wichita Mayor Jeff Longwell predicted Century II would be a hot discussion topic in 2017. And was it ever. Last year, the city was abuzz with debate: Should the iconic blue-domed Century II be razed, a newly constructed performing-arts/convention center to take its place? Or should the city just make necessary renovations to the nearly half-century-old building and preserve it as much as possible? Realizing the intense public emotion surrounding this issue, the city has elected to spend the majority of 2018 listening to Wichitans’ opinions, according to John D’Angelo, director of the city’s Division of Arts and Cultural Services. A Century II steering committee of sorts was announced earlier this month – and it will be led by Mary Beth Jarvis, president and CEO of Wichita Festivals.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • September 15, 2017 Wichita Eagle: Kirk Seminoff: Century II is worth saving, but can we do better?
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • September 13, 2017 Wichita Eagle: What’s next for Century II? Here’s VIII things you need to know.
    Long-awaited plans are beginning to crystallize to update and improve the Century II Convention and Performing Arts Center south of Douglas on the east bank of the Arkansas River. The City Council received a consultant’s report and recommendations from City Manager Robert Layton on how to proceed Tuesday night. Layton and Mayor Jeff Longwell met with Wichita Eagle writers and editors Wednesday to talk about how they planned to proceed.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • September 13, 2017 Wichita Eagle editorial: How the city got Century II’s future started right.
    Early discussion about Century II’s future had the look of a tornado warning with sirens blaring everywhere, yet no funnel in sight. But the clouds have cleared. A consultant’s report has landed. And though city manager Robert Layton seemed to put the report largely to the side when he made recommendations to the City Council on Tuesday night, we have a starting point for Century II’s future. Businessman Bill Warren can hold off on a third “Save Century II” radio spot — at least for now. Layton’s recommendations were sensible and send two messages to the community. 1. We know you love the blue dome. Let’s move forward by talking about how we not only keep it, but improve it. 2. We’re losing convention dollars, and it’s time to do something about it. The recommendations were simple. First, add 150,000 square feet to Expo Hall, the convention space attached to the south side of Century II. It would become competitive with convention centers around the Midwest. Next, keep Century II intact as a performing arts center with needed renovations while exploring options for the Convention and Exhibition halls. Those portions of the building are unattractive to conventions because of triangular spaces. Finally, study ways to privatize management of the convention center, saving the city about $1.8 million annually.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • September 12, 2017 Wichita Eagle: City manager: Keep Century II and modernize, expand it
    Wichita’s city manager recommended Tuesday that the City Council keep the blue dome building of the Century II Convention and Performing Arts Center, but modernize it, expand it and change the way it is managed. The proposal by City Manager Robert Layton came after a consultant’s presentation on the potential opportunities and costs of renovating or replacing the center. The consultant looked at the possibility of tearing down the iconic round building or turning it into a downtown marketplace that could include office and residential space. The report recommends privatizing all the city’s convention and performing arts functions. Layton’s recommendations build off the consultant report but are more modest.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • September 12, 2017 Wichita Eagle: Replace or renovate? Report offers two options for future of Century II.
    A consultant’s report on Century II recommends either tearing down the iconic round blue-roofed performing arts center building, or turning it into a downtown marketplace that could include office and residential space. The report also recommends privatizing all the city’s convention and performing arts functions.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • September 11, 2017 Wichita Eagle: Get a front-row seat for Century II’s future.
    City Hall will raise the curtain Tuesday on recommendations for what to do with Century II Convention and Performing Arts Center. The City Council has scheduled a rare evening workshop to hear the reports from a consultant hired to assess the practicality of renovating or replacing the center, which was built in 1969 and serves as the base for major performing arts institutions including Music Theatre Wichita, the Wichita Symphony Orchestra and Wichita Grand Opera.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • August 14, 2017 Wichita Eagle: Future of Century II should be put to public vote, Bill Warren urges.
    The future of Century II should be decided by Wichita voters, businessman Bill Warren thinks. As part of his “Save Century II” campaign, Warren — known in Wichita for the movie theaters he built — is buying more radio advertisements for his “Save Century II” campaign in the coming days.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • August 8, 2017 Wichita Eagle: Mayor: Doing nothing is most popular option for Century II. Leaving it alone is the most popular option for the aging Century II Convention and Performing Arts Center, Wichita Mayor Jeff Longwell said Tuesday. “I can tell you the popular opinion right now, amongst most of the leaders I talk to, is potentially doing nothing with Century II,” he said. “Because anything we do with Century II is going to create the need to find additional resources and I don’t know that there’s an appetite for that.” The City Council has discussed options including possible demolition. In May, it spent $294,000 on a consulting contract with California-based Arup Advisory Inc. to explore ways to renovate or replace the 50-year-old venue and look for more efficient ways to operate it.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • August 6, 2017 Wichita Eagle: Century II solutions: how a city with similar problems fixed theirs. Wichita isn’t the only city that has struggled with problems stemming from a big, round, aging building. Arizona State University remodeled its round Frank Lloyd Wright-designed performing arts center earlier this year to public fanfare. But nearly a decade ago in Austin, Texas, a round building was torn down. Enough parts were salvaged to pay homage to the old downtown building, beloved by some in Austin and hated by others – a solution Wichita leaders have occasionally referenced in informal settings.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • August 4, 2017 Opinion in Wichita Eagle: What is the spirit of Century II? I find myself torn between friends who want to save Century II, and friends who want to replace Century II. Like me, all driven by a deep love for our community, and the desire to see it be the best it can be. This has prompted me to ask a bit of an odd question: What is the spirit of Century II?
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • July 28, 2017 Editorial in Wichita Eagle: Century II is Wichita’s aging icon with unclear future. “Save Century II” advertising spots are on Wichita radio stations, meaning we have a brouhaha brewing in the mold of past disputes such as the downtown arena and Wichita schools bond issue. Businessman and developer Bill Warren is holding nothing back in his opposition to the possibility of demolition of the city’s 48-year-old convention and performing arts center. He’s pushing the idea of renovating rather than replacing with one-minute radio spots that are airing for three weeks. It doesn’t hurt Warren to get the word out and shape public opinion before the city presents a plan. Still, this seems so far like a controversy only in appearance.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • July 24, 2017 Wichita Eagle: ‘Save Century II’ ad launching on Wichita radio stations. Starting Monday, Wichita-area radio listeners will be hearing about Bill Warren’s efforts to “save Century II,” the iconic round building that has served as the city’s convention and performing arts center since 1969. The spot will run on five Wichita-area radio stations in the next three weeks, Warren said Monday. Warren, the businessman and developer known for the movie theaters he built, said he wouldn’t be using the ad campaign if he didn’t think Century II could very well be torn down, “based on what they have told me, meaning city officials that told me privately.” Warren declined to say which officials.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • July 20, 2017 Wichita Eagle: Editorial blog: When you exit Century II, please use your headlights. Of all the possible uses for a renovated or refurbished Century II, parking garage was not one that immediately came to mind. But that’s one of many options the city has been batted around as the five-decade-old convention and performing arts center is debated. Discussion is ongoing about what to do with the aging-but-iconic facility. Parking garage? Really? Movie theater builder Bill Warren, an outspoken Century II advocate, said the parking-garage idea would be “cultural genocide.” Mayor Jeff Longwell confirmed it was discussed, but in a “think outside the box” way.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • July 20, 2017 Wichita Eagle: Take Century II and put in a parking garage? Just one idea. Bill Warren — movie theater builder and vocal protector of Century II — says high-ranking city officials have told him that one option is to turn the interior of the iconic building into a parking garage. “It’s such a valuable building. It’s a landmark,” Warren said. Architects who designed Century II took inspiration from the architectural giant — Frank Lloyd Wright. A study is to be done in the near future to decide if the performing arts center should be renovated, or torn down and rebuilt. “You’re going to make it into a parking garage?” Warren said this week, his rising voice tinged with disgust. “I think the city is trying to commit cultural genocide here. That is beyond stupid.”
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • June 30, 2017 Wichita Eagle: Council candidates weigh in on saving or razing Century II. Saying they want to save the big blue roof instead of tearing it down in favor of a more modern convention center, three of four candidates for a northeast Wichita seat on the City Council stood up for Century II in a campaign forum Friday.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • May 14, 2017 Editorial in Wichita Eagle: Century II, stadium projects help city advance. Wichita took two steps forward last week toward improving key entertainment and cultural facilities. Such improvements are important to the region’s quality of life and its ability to attract employees, visitors and conventions. Tuesday, the Wichita City Council hired a consultant to look at ways to replace or renovate Century II. The iconic facility has served Wichita well for nearly 50 years, but it is showing its age. Some of Century II’s problems include not enough rehearsal space, lobby areas that are too small, a loading deck not big enough to accommodate large semi-trucks, and aging infrastructure, including elevators and heating and air-conditioning systems that break down. Also, the convention area is too small, and it is difficult to hold multiple events at the same time – both because of space and because the walls aren’t sound-proof.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • May 12, 2017 Wichita Eagle: Dispute brewing over whether to save that big blue roof — Century II. Wichita movie theater mogul Bill Warren isn’t holding back about his concern that the city will tear down iconic Century II, with its recognizable round blue roof. The 68-year-old businessman and developer said he’s going to start by spending $100,000 in an advertising effort called Save Century II. The city manager and the mayor, meanwhile, say the city has not decided on the building’s fate and that architecture is just one of multiple factors to be considered.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • May 9, 2017 Wichita Eagle: City considers giving developers control of land around Century II. Wichita has hired a consultant to explore possibilities for a public-private partnership to replace or renovate the Century II Convention and Performing Arts Center. The vote Tuesday came with little discussion by the City Council. But supporters of the performing arts spoke up on behalf of keeping the capabilities Wichita now has to stage a Broadway-quality show. The council approved a $294,000 consulting contract with California-based Arup Advisory Inc. to explore alternatives to fund renovation or replacement and to look for more efficient ways to operate the center. Mayor Jeff Longwell and City Manager Robert Layton said the city specifically wants to explore the possibility of giving a developer control of city-owned land around Century II and leveraging that into funding from the developer to help remodel or replace Century II.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • February 24, 2017 Wichita Eagle: Fate of Century II still undecided. The future of one of Wichita’s most beloved — yet slowly aging — buildings is still in flux. Both city leaders and members of Wichita’s arts and convention industries have discussed the need for new, or at least significantly overhauled, facilities for years now. City leaders said late last year that the fate of Century II will be a topic of discussion in 2017, though there hasn’t been much in the way of concrete discussion in the first two months of the year. John D’Angelo, director of the city’s Division of Arts and Cultural Services, said late last year the city plans to present its years of research into the issue to the public in late spring or summer of this year.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • January 13, 2014 Wichita Eagle: Sentiment at Wichita meeting favors keeping Century II. A strong majority of people at a meeting Monday night to discuss the future of Century II professed a love for the building in downtown Wichita, begging that it not be changed. And if changes have to be made, they said, do it by creating retail businesses and restaurants in the surrounding area, keeping the performing arts a strong focus of the building, making it more accessible for senior citizens who struggle with steps and finding adequate parking.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • December 22, 2013 Wichita Eagle: Consulting team selected for Wichita’s performing arts study. A consulting team has been selected to study performing arts needs in Wichita. AMS Planning and Research for the Arts and Entertainment Industries and partner Fisher Dachs Associates have been selected for the study, part of a broader convention and arts review underway as the Wichita City Council considers the future of Century II.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • December 15, 2013 Opinion in Wichita Eagle: Dennis I. Clary: Updated Century II would boost Wichita. Recently released findings from a study commissioned to assess Wichita’s convention market confirmed that our current convention facilities fall well below industry standards and put Wichita at a competitive disadvantage. In the hypercompetitive regional convention market, we need to be doing it better than Overland Park and Oklahoma City. The study found that an additional $30 million in annual economic output could be realized by addressing Wichita’s convention facility needs. This figure largely represents the entrance of outside dollars into our community. Like a prized export or the generation of primary jobs, a well-developed convention product means real economic growth – something from which every citizen can benefit.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • December 3, 2013 Wichita Eagle: City Council approves Century II performing arts study. The future of Century II now includes a detailed study of the city’s performing arts needs. The Wichita City Council on Tuesday unanimously approved the selection of Kansas City-based Populous and Wichita-based GLMV Architecture to conduct a planning and design study for the four-decade-old convention and performing arts center downtown. But that work will be on hold for four to eight weeks after a consultant is selected to study the city’s performing arts needs, a $30,000 to $50,000 study funded by Go Wichita, the city’s arts council and Music Theatre of Wichita.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • December 1, 2013 Wichita Eagle: Wichita City Council expected to OK study of performing arts needs. Wichita City Council members on Tuesday are expected to agree to a performing arts market study, a key step as the council considers the long-term future of Century II. The council will consider a planning and design contract with Kansas City-based Populous and GLMV Architecture of Wichita for planning and design of a new convention center and the future home of the city’s performing arts community, including Music Theatre of Wichita, Wichita Grand Opera and the Wichita Symphony. The study, however, will now incorporate a comprehensive look at the needs of Wichita performing arts, a study that will be financed jointly by Go Wichita, the city’s arts council and Music Theatre at a cost of between $30,000 and $50,000, with no taxpayer money involved, said Wayne Bryan, producing artistic director of Music Theatre.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • November 23, 2013 Wichita Eagle: Council weighs possible sales tax initiative for city’s projects. City Council members are weighing whether to ask Wichita voters to approve a long-term city sales tax to pay for a multitude of projects. Confronted with a daunting list of community development projects carrying a tab that could exceed $1 billion, several council members told The Eagle they have begun internal discussions about packaging the projects in a multi-year sales tax initiative similar to Oklahoma City’s MAPS, an acronym for Metropolitan Area Projects. A public vote could come next fall or later. Details are still fuzzy — there’s no consensus yet about the size of the sales tax, what it should build, how much it should raise or how long it should last before expiring. But several council members say that it is time to take the public’s temperature on the idea and the projects it could produce.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • November 19, 2013 Wichita Eagle: Wichita council delays contract on design consultant for Century II. City Council members deferred until Dec. 3 a contract with a design consultant for Century II. They said Tuesday that they want to see if the proposed consultant, Kansas City-based Populous, can include a broader study of performing arts needs as it weighs what a remodeled Century II — or an entirely new convention and performing arts complex — might look like. Populous is the former HOK Sport, an architectural firm best known for its design of sporting stadiums and arenas. The design study comes after a market study indicated that Wichita could compete for more national conventions with more modern convention space.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • November 9, 2013 Wichita Eagle: Arts leaders: More study needed on Century II as performing arts center. A study about Wichita’s convention future recommends tearing down Century II or turning it over to the arts groups that use part of it now. But the city’s performing arts leaders say they aren’t sure they want — or can use — all of the 44-year-old building. The city’s look at Century II’s future is proceeding too fast and needs to include a closer study of the future of arts in Wichita, they say.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • November 6, 2013 Wichita Eagle: Letters to the editor on Century II.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • November 3, 2013 Wichita Eagle: Eagle editorial: Bulldoze Century II? Should Wichita bulldoze what’s on its postcards in an effort to attract more visitors, specifically convention-goers? That’s the unexpected and, for some, alarming question about Century II soon to be answered at City Hall. The blue-domed circular building that is the 44-year-old core of the Century II Performing Arts and Convention Center is the city’s most iconic architectural image. It’s also the vital heart of the city’s performing arts, as home to the Wichita Symphony Orchestra, Music Theatre of Wichita and Wichita Grand Opera and host of touring Broadway shows. Yet a consultant hired by the Go Wichita Convention and Visitors Bureau had harsh words last week for the “very atypical” round building, as he laid out how the city might attract more of the 3,300 annually rotating events in the national convention market.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • November 3, 2013 Wichita Eagle: Don’t tear down Century II, most respondents to survey question say. A convention consultant told city officials last week that Century II is outdated and that Wichita could generate up to $30 million more per year in economic activity with state-of-the art convention facilities. Conventions, Sports and Leisure International said the city could either raze Century II and replace it with a new convention center or build a new exhibition hall and keep Century II for the performing arts.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • October 28, 2013 Wichita Eagle: Conventions consultant offers options for Century II. Go Wichita and city officials made a pitch Monday for the future of conventions in Wichita –- a future that may or may not include the iconic 44-year-old Century II Performing Arts and Convention Center. A new convention center in Wichita could generate up to $30 million annually in convention business, an independent study said.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • October 15, 2013 Wichita Eagle: Eagle editorial: Don’t raze Century II. If Wichita expects to land more and bigger conventions, it will need to do better than the current Century II. But Mayor Carl Brewer is right that razing the iconic saucer-shaped 45-year-old civic center “can’t happen.” That would be favoring potential visitors over Century II’s primary tenants — the Wichita Symphony Orchestra, Music Theatre of Wichita and Wichita Grand Opera — and their thousands of loyal patrons, many of whom drive long distances to enjoy performances. Bulldozing Century II also would unfairly minimize the performing arts’ value to downtown’s ongoing revival, as well as to the city’s history and cultural identity.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • October 13, 2013 Wichita Eagle: How can Century II become a convention contender? Add one more multimillion-dollar dilemma to City Hall’s ever-growing list of expensive to-do’s: What to do with Century II? The aging 1960s facility lacks sufficient exhibit space and technological amenities to be a serious player in the increasingly competitive Midwest convention market, local government and tourism officials say. There’s no easy answer for city officials. They already face huge bills — billions — to rehabilitate the city’s sewer, water and street systems after years of deferred maintenance. And there’s significant political opposition to the spending necessary to solve any of those issues.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • July 15, 2013 Wichita Eagle: Application to drill for oil under Century II on hold as Wichita City Council members are updated. City officials want to extract oil from 4,000 feet under Century II. But the project is on hold for at least a month, stymied by an internal mixup and questions about how drilling would affect downtown revitalization.
    Link to archived article: https://web.archive.org/web/20200127011044/https://www.kansas.com/news/article1119048.html

  • March 26, 2013 Wichita Eagle: Wichita City Council approves bonds for Century II renovation. A $1.91 million bond issue for capital improvements to convention space at Century II won approval from the Wichita City Council on Tuesday. The bond issue, which will be financed by transient guest tax revenue routed through the city’s 10-year capital improvements plan, includes security upgrades, elevator and freight lift evaluation, exhibitor services technology and equipment, addition of rehearsal space, plumbing maintenance, electrical and maintenance work, restroom improvements and kitchen and concession remodeling. Also included in the plan is a market study by Conventions Sports and Leisure International, a planning and advisory firm that consults with the convention industry, to measure Century II against current convention industry needs. That study will be financed by Go Wichita, the city’s tourism organization, and is not included in the bonding.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • March 25, 2013 Wichita Eagle: Helping Century II attract conventions tops Wichita council’s agenda. A plan to make Century II more attractive to conventions will be the focus of the Wichita City Council on Tuesday. The council will be asked to approve $1.91 million in bonding for upgrades for the facility, along with a study to determine its future as a convention center.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • July 10, 2012 Wichita Eagle: Wichita City Council approves rent increase for Century II. The cost of renting space at Century II is going up for the first time in 12 years. The Wichita City Council voted 6-0 Tuesday, with Vice Mayor Janet Miller absent, to raise rates on the entertainment and convention facility’s permanent tenants and users, a move to slice into an annual deficit of almost $2 «million that requires taxpayer and guest tax subsidies to balance. The rental increases, estimated to raise about $680,000 annually, are intended to eliminate the annual $500,000 taxpayer subsidy to the facility’s budget, and to slice another $200,000 off the $1.5«million annual subsidy from the city’s guest tax fund, money raised from visitors to the city’s hotels. Century II lost about $500,000 last year even after the guest tax subsidies, money that had to be picked up by Wichita taxpayers out of the city’s general fund.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • March 27, 2012 Wichita Eagle: Wichita City Council discuss rate increases at Century II. The cost of using Century II is going up. Wichita City Council members got their first look at how much Tuesday, the opening move in a rate structure that hasn’t changed for 12 years. John D’Angelo, the facility’s manager and the city’s arts and cultural services manager, proposed general rate increases that could increase annual building revenue as much as 14.5 percent. However, he said, it’s impossible to bridge an annual deficit that was almost $500,000 in 2011, despite an annual $1.5 million subsidy from the city’s convention and tourism fund. That fund comes from guest tax revenue collected at the city’s hotels. “Decreasing the tax subsidy is a benchmark we need to try to achieve,” D’Angelo said.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • June 7, 2011 Wichita Eagle: Anderson’s vision. Every time a crowd gathers at Century II, Wichita owes a round of applause to leaders such as former City Commissioner and Mayor William D. “Bill” Anderson, who died last week at age 83.
    Link to article: https://www.kansas.com/opinion/editorials/article1065972.html

  • October 19, 2010 Wichita Eagle: Century II logo draws designers’ scorn. They’re calling it Wichita’s own version of the Gap debacle. Along with unveiling almost $1 million in renovations at Century II late last week, the city debuted the center’s new logo.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • October 15, 2010 Wichita Eagle: CITY UNVEILS NEW LOOK FOR CENTURY II — Not a single bad seat in the hall. Good-bye sore backs and bottoms. Or at least that’s what the city hopes now that it has installed 2,197 new seats in the Century II Concert Hall. The seats, which cost $268 each after delivery and installation, are the most prominent part of $941,000 in renovations at the 40-year-old facility. The improvements were unveiled Thursday afternoon to a small audience of city officials, media and facility tenants, including representatives from the Wichita Symphony Orchestra, Music Theatre of Wichita and the Wichita Grand Opera.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • April 2, 2010 Wichita Eagle: City seeks input on new Century II seats. “Take a seat, pick a chair, leave it there, and don’t stay long,” said Mayor Carl Brewer with a smile as he spoke at a news conference Thursday at Century II. he event launched a voting period in which the public is invited to give its input on new seating for the Century II Concert Hall. From 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. through Tuesday, three sample chairs will be on display between Century II and Expo Hall for the public to sit in and cast a ballot for their favorite. New seats are part of the $22 million in upgrades the city plans as it prepares for a potential overhaul of Century II. The City Council approved $2.3 million worth of the renovations earlier this month, with most of that earmarked for seating.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • March 3, 2010 Wichita Eagle: Century II renovations will include new seating. The seating in Century II’s Concert Hall will be replaced as part of $2.3 million in renovations approved Tuesday by the Wichita City Council.The funds also will pay for waterproofing on leaky windows, replacement of doors that have been scratched over the years and installation of new electrical floor boxes in Expo Hall.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • January 24, 2010 Wichita Eagle: BUYING TIME — City plans repairs for Century II while it debates major overhaul. Wichita has a gleaming new arena downtown, but the 40-year-old Century II convention hall 10 blocks away is showing its age with cracks, leaks and broken seats. For a couple years, the city has sat on a roughly $450 million plan to expand the Expo Hall and build a new performing arts center. City Manager Robert Layton said that proposal probably will remain shelved until the economy improves and downtown Wichita shows an expanded convention hall would be worth it. Meanwhile, the building may get $22 million in upgrades and repairs over the next few years.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • July 16, 2009 Wichita Eagle: Upgrades For Century II — New Seating For $1? City Considers Ticket Surcharge To Offset Costs. The seats at Century II Concert Hall are more than 30 years old. After decades of concerts, performances and events, their age is showing.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • November 5, 2008 Wichita Eagle: Oversight Of Botanica, Century II To Change. Administration of Botanica and Century II will pass from the city’s Parks and Recreation Department to its division of Arts and Cultural Services under a plan the City Council approved Tuesday.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • September 12, 2007 Wichita Eagle: Council Oks $2.8 Million For Parks. The Wichita City Council on Tuesday voted to borrow $2.8 million for park and recreation improvements citywide, including a $1.5 million bond issue to begin the long and expensive process of renovating Century II. The $1.5 million could be used for a number of needs at the convention and performing arts center, which was built in 1969, officials said. Among the potential improvements are replacing seats in the balcony of Convention Hall, renovating restrooms for better access for the disabled and installing new audiovisual equipment. City officials stressed that the money is primarily to catch up on deferred maintenance, and that it has nothing to do with an estimate released last month projecting a potential $290 million facelift for the building.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • September 10, 2007 Wichita Eagle: Council To Consider Century II Renovations. The city of Wichita could be about to take the first steps to reverse the ongoing deterioration of the Century II Convention Center. The City Council will consider on Tuesday whether to issue bonds and borrow $1.5 million to start redecorating and renovating the 38-year-old convention and entertainment complex.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • August 17, 2007 Opinion in Wichita Eagle: Vital — Century II Needs Work To Serve Mission. Talk about sticker shock. The $290 million estimate for renovating Century II even made Wichita City Council members choke. But keep in mind that the estimate was really an educated guess, just as the city’s capital improvement program is a comprehensive wish list rather than a working blueprint. All of the CIP, including project dates and costs, is subject to scrutiny and change over many years. It’s unlikely that council members would end up approving every item on Century II’s to-do list. They also may find less expensive alternatives. Their first step could be a $20 million investment next year in planning for the renovation; the earliest the work would begin is 2012. Putting Century II in the CIP, which the council approved Tuesday along with a 2008 budget, was meant “to try to set the outline in place of who to talk to when about what, and try to move it forward,” Doug Kupper, director of Wichita’s Park and Recreation Department, told The Eagle editorial board Thursday. What is clear is that Century II needs work — a lot of it — and that the 38-year-old convention and performing arts center is still a vital and valuable facility. Wichitans should be thinking about Century II’s value to the community long term.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • August 15, 2007 Wichita Eagle: City Oks Wish List, Including Century II. Century II could get $290 million in renovations, a new bridge might reach over the Big Ditch and a new police substation may be built — perhaps downtown. It’s all part of the $2.4 billion wish list the City Council approved Tuesday as a blueprint for new projects during the next decade. But while it may sound promising, council members stressed that no one knows exactly how some of these projects — including Century II — will be paid for. And they questioned City Manager George Kolb about why Century II was given a “placeholder” on the budget when many other projects are equally worthy of consideration.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • August 14, 2007 Wichita Eagle: A $290 Million Face-lift — Upgrade Could Cost More Than Arena Council To Vote On Century II Renovation. Even before construction has started on a new $201 million downtown arena, the city of Wichita is making plans to spend $290 million to renovate Century II. Today, the Wichita City Council could take the first step toward funding a multi-year project that could bring a new face, more comfortable seats, more restrooms and better amenities to the 40-year-old concert facility when it adopts a revised long-term capital improvement plan.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • July 15, 2006 Wichita Eagle: Privatizing Century II Is In The Budget. The Wichita City Council is being pushed to vote on privatizing Century II without knowing how that would affect local events like symphony concerts and the annual garden show, council member Sharon Fearey said. Hiring new management for the downtown events center is included in the 2007 budget proposed by City Manager George Kolb.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • January 9, 2006 Wichita Eagle: Savings At What Cost? — New Century II Oversight Could Hurt Local Groups. Taxpayers should expect to continue subsidizing Century II even if the city hires a private company to manage the convention center and concert hall. Leaders from three companies that want to manage Century II say they can promote local acts, attract more national tours and manage the hall more efficiently. But none plans to eliminate the taxpayer subsidy — $1 million in 2005. They say they might be able to reduce it.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • September 23, 2005 Opinion in Wichita Eagle; Consider All Options For Century II Management. The Greater Wichita Convention and Visitors Bureau is closely watching and participating in the process of deciding how Century II’s operations will be managed in the future. We believe it’s too early in the process for us — or anyone, for that matter — to decide whether a private company should oversee Century II’s day-to-day operations, or whether every aspect of the facility’s operation should remain directly managed by city officials.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • August 10, 2005 Opinion in Wichita Eagle: Dead? — Century II Privatization Lacking Support. It’s wise to keep an open mind about better ways to do business. But privatizing Century II may be a dead idea walking — especially if it involves more than hiring a private manager. After all, Century II’s major tenants oppose it. So do city employees who work there. And so do many citizens, as evidenced by a petition drive to prevent privatization.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • July 19, 2005 Wichita Eagle: Century II Attracts 3 Private Bidders — Wichita Officials Hope They Can Stem Financial Losses At The Facility By Hiring An Outside Management Firm. Three private management companies have officially said “Pick me!” to the city’s request for managers of Century II. The city hopes that private management can stem years of financial losses at the convention center and performing arts facility.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • July 13, 2005 Wichita Eagle: Century II Stakeholders Criticize Plan — Local Event Promoters Are Worried They Will Be Passed Over For More Profitable Patrons. The manager of the Wichita Garden Show on Tuesday blasted city plans to privatize management of the Century II convention center. Representing a group of about 80 show and event promoters, Alex Lingg told the City Council that privatization would threaten more than 35 years of cooperation between Century II and events such as the Garden Show, the Home Show and the Women’s Fair. “Out-of-town management companies are driven to produce a greater profit,” she said. “Consequently, events and conventions from out of town are given higher priority for use of Century II, causing local shows to be bumped out.”
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • July 7, 2005 Opinion in Wichita Eagle: Privatize? — County-run Century II Might Serve Public. Even after all the wild talk of selling off Century II to casino develope rs, Sedgwick County’s expression of interest in managing the city-owned convention center came as a surprise. Why would the county want to run a facility that loses $450,000 or more a year, especially with the future role of its Kansas Coliseum uncertain and the county-spearheaded downtown arena anticipated to need a subsidy?
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • July 5, 2005 Opinion in Wichita Eagle: City Shouldn’t Privatize, Sell Century II Complex. As longtime citizens of Wichita and possessing a combined 60 years of working diligently for the growth and economic development of Wichita and her downtown, we are very alarmed about two proposals being discussed in governme nt circles. The first of these proposals is the privatization of the Century II convention center complex.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • July 3, 2005 Wichita Eagle: County Wants To Manage Century II — The County Says It Running The Facility Would Eliminate The Potential Of The Area’s Major Venues Competing With Each Other. When the city of Wichita opens proposals for outside management of the Century II Convention Center, officials will see at least one familiar name — Sedgwick County. County officials confirmed this week that they are preparing a bid to run the convention and performing arts center downtown.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • June 26, 2005 Opinion in Wichita Eagle: City Would Keep Control. The possibility of an outside company managing Century II has raised some understandable initial concerns by Century II tenants about private managers raising rent, limiting access or even moving them out of the facility. But such a manager is limited to being an implementer of public policy and cannot on its own implement rent increases or other such frightening initiatives. I would even suggest that rent increases can perhaps be best avoided if the facility is managed by an outside firm with the ability to increase facility usage and revenues.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • June 26, 2005 Opinion in Wichita Eagle: Don’t Privatize Century II. The city of Wichita has issued a request for proposal asking responses to different management scenarios for the private operation of Century II. That such a solicitation can even go out shows city management has a profound misunderstanding of the importance of Century II to our community. I suggest that those who are ready to gamble on the idea of privatization think carefully before they risk damaging a vital community institution.
    Link to article in Newsbank here.

  • May 1, 2005 Opinion in Wichita Eagle: Caution — Go Slow On Kolb’s Proposal For Century II. The arrival of a new Wichita city manager last summer has led to the revival of the idea of privatizing Century II, or at least hiring a private management company to run it. The idea has merit — there is nothing wrong with seeking ways to make Century II better benefit the city’s coffers and quality of life, and the 36-year-old original circular building needs updating and probably expansion. But the way City Manager George Kolb and his staff members have pursued the privatization idea since November has not won them support from the tenants. And that spells trouble for winning approval of the mayor and City Council to even proceed with seeking proposals from interested firms over the next few weeks.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • March 25, 2005 Wichita Eagle: Most Agree: Casino Talks Premature — A County Commissioner, Waterwalk Executive And Casino Developer Say It Isn’t Time To Talk About Selling Downtown Properties. Business, political and gaming officials said Friday they need to learn more about a possible major hotel-casino development in downtown Wichita before they can reach any conclusions about it. “I think it’s probably a little premature to even know what the impact would mean, or anything about it,” said Tom Johnson, president of Wichita WaterWalk, a planned development of retail shops, restaurants, residences and offices that would be next to the project.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • March 26, 2005 Opinion in Wichita Eagle: Dicey — Century II Casino A Long Shot. Say one thing about Mayor Carlos Mayans: He doesn’t lack for ideas capable of rattling the status quo. His latest conversation starter concerns the landmark Century II complex and attached Hyatt Regency Wichita. Mr. Mayans is thinking of selling it — all of it — for incorporation into an envisioned $500 million destination casino and convention center. The Central Library also might have to move.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • March 25, 2005 Wichita Eagle: City Ponders Selling Century II And Hyatt — Casino Could Be Part Of Downtown Redevelopment. The city of Wichita is entertaining offers for the Century II convention complex and the adjacent Hyatt Regency hotel from private investors who want to transform the downtown fixtures into a $500 million entertainment, retail and residential area. The major component of the project would be a large destination casino, surrounded by upscale shops, added convention space and high-rise condominiums. City officials stress that a deal, which could be two years away and must generate revenue for the city and county, hinges on casino gambling being approved by the Kansas Legislature and Sedgwick County voters.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • March 9, 2005 Wichita Eagle: Century II Update Possible — The City Council Hires A Consultant To Weigh What It Would Take To Double The Size Of The 35-year-old Convention Center. Century II needs to be twice its current size to compete with other cities for conventions, city officials say. On Tuesday, the Wichita City Council voted to spend $55,000 to hire consultants to look at enlarging and modernizing the round, 198,000-square-foot facility, which has been a downtown fixture since it was built 35 years ago.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • January 21, 2005 Wichita Eagle: Library’s Relocation Suggested. Wichita City Manager George Kolb told library board members this week that he would like to move the downtown library so the city can expand the Century II convention center, projects that could cost $100 million.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • November 9, 2004 Wichita Eagle: Ex-century II Chief Gets Probation — Larry Lahaie Pleaded Guilty In August To Mail Fraud And Lying To Investig Ators For Illegal Loans He Took From Vendors. The former director of the Century II convention center was placed on probation for one year Monday on federal charges accusing him of mail fraud and lying to law enforcement about a scandal surrounding last year’s collapse of the Central Ticket Agency. Larry Lahaie, 49, was ordered at the hearing not to work in a position where he had control over money without first obtaining permission from the probation office.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • August 25, 2004 Wichita Eagle: Century II’s Ex-director Admits Guilt — Taking Illegal Loans From Vendors, Then Denying It To Federal Investig Ators, Leads To Larry Lahaie’s Guilty Plea. The former director of the Century II convention center has pleaded guilty to federal mail fraud and lying to law enforcement in connection with a scandal surrounding last year’s collapse of the Central Ticket Agency. Larry Lahaie, 49, admitted soliciting illegal loans from Century II vendors for personal use and telling federal investigators he had no knowledge of such loans, according to a plea agreement released Tuesday by the U.S. attorney’s office. Wichita City Council members said the guilty plea entered Monday brings some closure to the situation, which has kept Century II operating under an interim director and without its own box office for more than a year.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • December 11, 2003 Wichita Eagle: Century II Boss Pleads Not Guilty — Larry Lahaie Will Fight Charges That He Took Bribes From City Vendors And Misled Federal Agents. Suspended Century II director Larry Lahaie pleaded not guilty at his arraignment Wednesday on charges that he solicited bribes from two vendors and lied to the FBI in an attempt to cover it up. During his first appearance in U.S. District Court in Wichita, Lahaie was allowed to remain free without posting bond, but U.S. Magistrate Judge Donald Bostwick ordered him to surrender his passport while awaiting trial. Lahaie was indicted last month on two counts of bribery and one count of making false statements to the FBI. He is accused of using his position in 2002 and early 2003 to obtain between $5,400 and $9,280 in loans from Central Ticket Agency, a company that once handled ticket sales for Century II.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • June 7, 2002 Wichita Eagle: Century II’s New Director Is Settling In — Larry Lahaie Takes Over A Position Left Vacant For 18 Years — And His Head Is Spinning With Things To Do.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • December 10, 2001 Wichita Eagle: City Looks At Century II Upgrade — Without New Technology And A More Modern Look, Officials Fear The Convention Center Will Lose Business. Century II, Wichita’s main convention center, is more than 30 years old, and city officials think it’s starting to show its age. The city is looking for a consultant who can develop proposals for remodeli ng parts of the building. In addition, the consultant would do a market study to see whether the Bob Brown Expo Hall at Century II should be expanded. “We’re just getting more and more competition,” said Timm McCurdy, Century II’s acting director. “I think it’s important for the city of Wichita to recognize that and be proactive in trying to attract future business to the city.”
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • August 18, 2001 Opinion in Wichita Eagle: Public Arts Supporters Got Their Way On Century II. If any of the folks at City Hall were under the impression that public support for the arts in Wichita was flagging, they now stand corrected. All it took to rally our town’s arts aficionados was an exploration by City Manager Chris Cherches into possibly privatizing the management of Century II conventi on center — an exploration now ended.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • August 10, 2001 Wichita Eagle: Century II To Stay City-run — The City’s Decision To Continue To Run The Center Is Prompted In Part By Arts Organizations’ Pleas Against Privatization. To the delight of performing-arts organizations that mobilized against the possibility of a private management company running Century II, Wichita officials announced Thursday that the convention center will remain under city control.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • August 7, 2001 Opinion in Wichita Eagle: Mission Proceed With Caution On Century II. When Century II opened in 1969, it was intended to equally serve the arts and business. It has done that well, in recent years for a modest annual public subsidy of $700,000 in hotel-motel taxes. But a controversy over Century II’s possible privatization has needlessly put its two fundamental purposes in conflict.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • August 5, 2001 Wichita Eagle: Century II Change Would Harm Arts Groups. The city of Wichita is considering turning over the management of Century II to a private operating company. At first glance, it may seem like a wonderful opportunity to save the hotel/motel tax subsidy required by its operation and to have experienced facility managers who might be influential in attracting new convention and tourism business to the community. Strip away the surface, though, and numerous drawbacks are revealed that would gut the local performing-arts community and severely limit the building’s usage to all but a few other organizations that regularly use Century II for various business and social functions.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • July 20, 2001 Wichita Eagle: A Privatized Century II? — Local Arts Groups Don’t Like The Idea, Which The City Is Reportedly Considering For Its Downtown Concert And Convention Hall. Some of Wichita’s top live-entertainment organizations made it clear Thursday night that they will fight a proposal to privatize Century II.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • January 30, 2000 Wichita Eagle: Downtown Hotels Leave Room For Improvement — The Hyatt Alone Can’t Carry The Burden Of Bringing More Convention Business To Wichita. On one side of Douglas stands the Hyatt Regency Wichita hotel, a $31 million monument to city hopes. On the other stands The Broadview, home to bankruptcy, frustration and, as of Friday, new ownership. Caught in the middle is the Century II convention center. The city-owned Hyatt opened in 1997 to help the center reach its economic potential and spur downtown growth. But that hasn’t happened — and it won’t happen, officials say, until the city has enough downtown hotel rooms to serve Century II. One thousand rooms would be ideal, they say, but long-standing problems with occupancy rates and renovations have made that impossible for now.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • January 11, 1999 Wichita Eagle: As Century II Opened, So Did Potential. Editor’s note: Then-reporter Jon Roe’s first-person account of touring Century II before it opened 30 years ago today appeared in The Wichita Beacon on Jan. 10, 1969. The following is an edited version of the original. It’s a beauty and beast of a building. I like it, having come to understand its dual nature and appreciate how well it can serve. Century II, which will open officially at 10 a.m. Saturday, is a giant built to serve two masters — the arts and business. Each half of its split personality appears equipped to do its job well.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • May 24, 1998 Wichita Eagle: Return Of Century II’s ‘tripodal’ Is A Few Thousand Dollars Away. Restoration Of The Controversial Statue Has Been Stalled By Fund-raising Problems. Businesses and working people throughout Wichita have pitched in to help restore “Tripodal,” but a few thousand dollars are still needed to bring James Rosati’s controversial statue back to its familiar spot outside Century II. “We’re just trying to raise the money that’s snagging us,” said Kim Forrester, who has been running the all-volunteer restoration project for the Building and Construction Trades of Central and Western Kansas, a conglomeration of unions. The 11-ton “Tripodal” was removed from its concrete base for repairs to its rusting steel innards last June, just after the 25th anniversary of its installation and the beginning of a still ongoing debate about its aesthetic value, with an expectation that it would be back in just 45 days.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • May 3, 1997 Wichita Eagle: Century II Architect Lauded For His Vision. Roy Varenhorst Studied Under Frank Lloyd Wright, And Left His Mark On The Wichita Landscape. He studied under a legend who left an indelible mark on the world’s architectural landscape. Then he came to Wichita and made a lasting impression of his own. Roy Varenhorst, a student of Frank Lloyd Wright who later became the chief architect for the construction of Century II, died April 24 at the age of 68. Mayor Bob Knight described him as “a very gifted individual” who made “an enormous contribution to this community.”
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • January 7, 1996 Wichita Eagle: Century II Concert Hall Gets A Makeover. Concert hall gets new look Carpet, new seats, paint for Century II. After 27 years of performances, the concert hall at Century II was starting to show its age. Concert-goers were sinking into the worn-out seats, the carpet was becoming threadbare in conspicuous spots, and something about that salmon-colored paint job was beginning to get a bit annoying.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • January 12, 1994 Wichita Eagle: Century II Takes Low-key Approach To 25th Birthday. Wichita’s gigantic blue-and-brown flying saucer, sometimes known as Century II, landed next to Douglas and the Arkansas River 25 years ago. The silver anniversary of Century II’s grand opening on Jan. 11 of 1969 was marked on Tuesday only by a large banner thanking Wichita for “a quarter-century of success,” but after 25 years as a cultural center and economic cash cow the building does not need to ballyhoo itself.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

  • April 8, 1993 Wichita Eagle: Century II’s Legend Of ‘The Ceiling People’ Becomes Reality. Wichita’s Century II, home to “Les Miserables” and other theatrical productions, last weekend boasted a real-life version of “Phantom of the Opera.” But it was unlike Paris’ murderous monster striking from the shadows of the cavernous opera house. Wichita’s version is a shy homeless man who hid in a maze of corridors and crawlspaces, living on junk food snatched from the dressing rooms. Allen Mosher, a slight 38-year-old man who speaks in a nearly inaudible whisper, was cornered about 3 a.m. Sunday and charged this week with trespassing.
    Link to article at Newsbank here.

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