By Jesse Wood
March 3, 2014. On Monday afternoon, the Cultural Resources Advisory Board for the Town of Boone passed a motion to recommend to Boone Town Council that it move forward with licensing “Horn in the West” property to Southern Appalachian Historical Association for the upcoming 63rd season of the outdoor drama.
The Town of Boone owns the property where the outdoor drama takes place and has moved from a leasing to licensing arrangement for SAHA and the Watauga County Farmers’ Market, which operates in the parking lot on Saturday mornings.
Cultural Resources Advisory Board noted that it was making the recommendation because SAHA submitted a requested laundry list of items based on SAHA’s capability – financial or otherwise – to improve “Horn in the West” structures. If council approves the recommendation, it would grant SAHA authority to carry out specific repairs for “Horn in the West” to ensure safe operation of the drama this upcoming season.
In October, the Boone Town Council approved an “immediate needs” list compiled by Boone Planning & Inspections department for improvements to the “Horn in the West” property.
The Boone Town Council, based on CRAB recommendations, extended a short-term license agreement multiple times in order for SAHA to figure out a plan on how to meet those immediate needs before the upcoming “Horn in the West” season. If council approves, the license would extend through the upcoming season.
Greg Williams, vice chair of SAHA, presented an exhaustive report to CRAB members and town staff for review prior to the meeting. The report notes that SAHA has $43,000 in the bank and has funded an account with $13,000, earmarked for repairs and maintenance.
Williams told CRAB that SAHA benefactors have signed affidavits to cover any repair costs that go above and beyond that $13,000. The report also notes that based on conversations with its general contractor that the PIT building – one of the structures in question – is to be demolished and removed by March 31.
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