NEWS

  /  

February 19, 2002

News in Brief

Ida Noyes' power goes out for ten hours Thursday night

The power went out in Ida Noyes Hall at about 9:40 p.m. Thursday night, interrupting Doc film's movie screening, forcing The Pub to close early, and postponing the The Chicago Maroon's Friday issue.

The electrical outage appears to have been caused by a malfunction of a ComEd power company transformer. "In general, if it's a transformer outage, there's the possibility that a rodent got into the transformer and just shorted it out," said Tim Lindberg, a spokesperson for ComEd.

Power was restored around 7:45 a.m. Friday.

Doc was screening Tom Stoppard's Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead when the power went out. "Just about 15 minutes into the movie everything went dark. At first people in the cinema thought it was part of the show," said Chris Quiroga, a projectionist at Doc.

"There were almost 200 people in the cinema," Quiroga said. "They amused themselves with flashlights, making shadow puppets on the wall. A couple of people had lasers and were making letters."

The Doc staff quickly realized the blackout had been building-wide. "We had no idea how long the power would be out… finally the show captain said, 'We're going to cancel the screening,' so we issued some refunds and vouchers for another screening."

Although Rosencrantz and Guildenstern was shown for free on Sunday night, it didn't draw the same crowd as on Thursday. "Only about half the people showed up," Quiroga said.

Service at The Pub, a private concession in the basement of Ida Noyes, was also interrupted. "It's the kind of thing you dread," said Victor Vogt, the manager of The Pub, "but everything was very organized. The UCPD showed up very quickly. There were no problems…it was an orderly exit from the building."

"We had had a very busy night up to that point," Vogt said. He estimated that he lost $500, although he emphasized that he was more concerned with the safety of the patrons.

"I'm not going to worry about [the money]," he said. "What you lose one night you tend to make up another night."

—Raphael Satter


Midway Advisory Council's first meeting draws small crowd to the Midway Skating Rink

The Midway Advisory Council met on February 7 at the Midway Skating Rink to discuss the future of the Midway Plaisance and different possibilities for its use. The meeting, where the council coordinates programming for the entire Midway, was sparsely attended.

"Only six people showed. A bit of speculation was that it was because people were happy with the management of the Plaisance," said David Guyer, special assistant to the University's vice president for community affairs.

Guyer hopes that added publicity and a change of location from the ice rink to Cobb Hall will boost attendance at the next meeting.

"The whole purpose of advisory councils set up by the park district is so that people can have input about what they'd like to see on the Midway," Guyer said.

According to Guyer, some proposals for the Midway include more programmed activities in the summertime, such as sports events or movies. The council is also looking into covering the ice rink with a different surface during the summer so that it can be used for roller hockey or basketball. There are no plans to build any more structures on the Midway

The Midway Advisory Council's next meeting will be held Thursday, March 7 from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. in Cobb 214.

—Carolina Bolado