2001 was a huge year for Manchester! It brought the opening of the civic center, Intown’s banner program, the first-ever Open Doors Trolley, the advent of the Manchester Monarchs, and even more! Keep on reading to find out some more details about some of these events!
Beautification and Promotion
One large part of our beautification and promotional efforts here in Downtown is Intown Manchester’s Street Banner Program. Started in 2001, the banner program began with each participating organization creating its own design and supporting the program financially. The first designs were of The Currier Musuem of Art, NHIA, FIRST, City Hall, UNH Manchester, and the Mill Girl.
Looking to 2016 and our current banner program, so much has changed! The program still sticks to the mission of 2001; to beautify downtown with public art, and provide a means of promotion for the organizations that purchase ones. The proceeds from the program directly benefit Intown’s beautification efforts. Most unique about our banners is that each year there is brand new original artwork by a student from NHIA! There are typically 4-6 different pieces of artwork each year that line Elm, Commercial, Granite, and Hanover Streets. The artist typically creates artwork that reflects the beauty of our Downtown with a unique artistic twist. Next time you walk along any of these streets be sure to look up and admire the amazing banners!
If your organization or business is interested in joining the banner program, please give our office a call at 603-645-6285!
2001 also marked the year that the Verizon Wireless Arena, or the Civic Center (as it was called in its early days) was opened! The history of the Arena are best described by, well, the arena itself. On www.verizonwirelessarena.com they write:
The ground breaking for the Verizon Wireless Arena took place in April 2000, and took nearly one and a half years to complete the facility. On November 15, 2001, we celebrated the grand opening of the Verizon Wireless Arena. The Manchester Monarchs, of the ECHL, played their first home game on November 16, and Aerosmith performed the following night.
Seating capacity for the Verizon Wireless Arena varies, depending upon each individual event. For example, hockey games seat approximately 10,019, basketball seats 11,140 people, end stage concerts hold about 10,050, while center stage concerts seat about 11,770.
• The Verizon Wireless Arena site is on 8.03 acres with 2,650 tons of asphalt
• The arena no longer has soda dispensers, we are 100% bottled soda
• We have 5 Coca-Cola Vending Machines that the general public can use
• The arena has 38 draft beer towers and 38 cash registers (26 in our permanent concession stands and 12 potential portable beer stands)
• The arena has 34 suites, 5 party suites, and 542 club seats.
• 11 miles of ice floor piping, 3,000 light bulbs, and 350 doors.
• Arenas like it: None
In Intown Manchester’s December 2001 Newsletter we quoted that about 20 Downtown street-level businesses opened since the Board of Mayer and Aldermen approved the Civic Center proposal. Some of those businesses included Runners’ Alley and Piccola Italia, and Margarita’s–all Downtown staples! The arena continues to bring top-notch entertainment for not only New Hampshire’s Downtown, but the entire state!