By Michelle Paetow
Mason Times staff writer
MASON — Rayner Park will have a fully functional stage that allows for more artistic activity opportunities by June.
Mayor Leon Clark said, “It will be a huge benefit to the community. The design will serve a lot of different possibilities. It can be used for concerts and plays and on the side of the stage we are hoping to use to screen movies”
A private donor gave the city $10,000 through the Mason Rotary Club. To date, $16,000 has been raised by Mason Rotary club, Rotary businesses, the Mason State Bank and the Centennial Fund through the Mason State Bank.
Katy Krysiak, mother of three, said, “I definitely would go to the park stage performances. We go to the summer concerts at Lake Lansing and we go there a lot, like every other weekend. I think it would be awesome if there was something right here in town. Our kids are very active, so they would probably love to be in an plays they would have.” said Katy Krysiak, mother of three.
The stage will be built using volunteer labor. At this time, there are 20 confirmed volunteers. A general contractor has volunteered his time and connection to suppliers for stage materials, and has cut the cost by $2,000 and $3,000 than the original projected cost. The entire cost of the stage is estimated to be about $20,000.
City Manager Marty Colburn said, “It will definitely help the community and cultural arts for many, many years to come. Rayner Park is just beautiful and it will be a great asset for the summer. We only had to remove two trees to make room for the stage and the remaining trees make a nice shady area that the audience will benefit from.”
The stage is 32 by 36 feet and is an enclosed stage with a rooftop. The stage is designed so the sound projected will face away from nearby homes. Rotary Stage will be controlled and maintained the the city, including making reservations for stage usage.
Shannon Price, mother of two said, “I would absolutely attend events, the community is so important to us. It was devastating when it closed down (for the winter) the kids missed going there. Just having it in the community it would be beneficial and give kids and the people something to do.”
Concerts and activities that take place in the downtown area may be moved the Rayner Park during the summer.
Kathy Sodman, owner of the Daily Scoop said, “I am involved in Mason Youth Theater and we use the Mason Community church. I’m not sure if we would use it for a production because we usually just do one a year and it is usually during this time, when it is cold out. Because they do the Thursday concerts here (downtown), if they move it over there, it will draw people away from the downtown area, and it may take away business in the summer,” Sodman said. “But it is a good thing for the community and hopefully people will use it for that.”