Officials in Salem have to be pleased with themselves for the one they pulled on Roanoke today. The amphitheater Salem is planning to build in December, the one that caused such a stir yesterday, is a puny 35-by-20 feet with a roof standing 15 feet over it. Its initial construction is $48,000 (and I really can't see where that's going) with more to come later. That will be borne by a civic group, not the city.
The premature announcement yesterday had Roanoke officials scurrying around looking for a response. Roanoke is considering a $13 million amphitheater.
The "seating capacity" for the Longwood Park-based amphitheater is estimated at about 2,000, but that's not permanent seats. It's your chair in the grass around the structure. In the future, the facility could see lights and a sound system.
Frankly, you have to wonder why the news conference. This has the look of an auxiliary building in a public park that will be a nice addition, but not much to write home about.