The new William E. Urschel Pavilion finally opened up for public use on Saturday August 15, 2015. To celebrate the new facility, Valparaiso Events hosted their weekly farmer’s market along with a fun festival to showcase the capacity of the pavilion as well as all the possibilities for events. With ice-skating, wedding parties, and all sorts of other activities, the pavilion will provide a variety of different uses for the community.
The pavilion, named after William E. Urschel, holds a lot of history for the Urschel family, being the site of family houses. Giving back to the community they love has always been a priority for the Urschel family.
“We have always felt that investing in the community where you live is the best way to give back. We have gotten a lot from the community over the last 105 years that we’ve been in business, so the least we can do is give some of that back,” President and CEO of Urschel Laboratories, Rick Urschel said.
A lot of hard work, donations and countless hours went into planning and executing the pavilion. This project is a staple of Valparaiso and showcases the desire for the community to continuously grow.
“We want the pavilion to be as flexible as possible for all different kinds of uses, much like what you see at Central Park Plaza now. To have that intimate feel and a safe kind of environment for all different ages, just really makes this a place for the community to come together and enjoy each other’s company,” John Seibert, Valpo Parks Foundation Executive Director said.
Now that all the building is done, the community can start enjoying it! The overwhelming consensus is that the structure is beautiful and people are eager to enjoy the pavilion through each season.
“This new edition is wonderful! Everything from the pavilion, the facilities that they have put in, the artwork, the flowers and the opportunity for people to be together downtown is just great,” Community Resident, Lorene Johnson said.
The pavilion did its job exceptionally well, as families and businesses interacted, while also enjoying the shaded environment.
“I just think this does a lot for the community. The fact that they are trying to keep the downtown vibrant and active is great. It is kind of neat watching all of the little kids in the splash pad and everyone having a good time,” Community Resident, Katie Allen said.
“It really gives us a great sense of pride and satisfaction to know that everyone here will be enjoying the improvements that we are making. There will be weddings here, engagement parties, fundraisers; this is our public square, our welcome mat, and our place where everyone is welcome. There is something very special about that,” Valparaiso Major, Jon Costas said.
Valparaiso’s downtown just got a whole lot more fun with the William E. Urschel Pavilion finally being open to public use. Whether it is for a party or to try out some ice-skating, the pavilion will provide use for everyone in the community.