On behalf of the members of the Coronado Cultural Arts Commission and many of our Arts Partners, we reflect that the past year has been a challenging one for us all, as individuals and as a community. While we have still found “virtual” enjoyment in the arts, and even learned a few new things, we are looking forward to when we can once again gather for events.
The goal of the Coronado Cultural Arts Commission is to further not only music, theater, and visual arts but also the culture of Coronado, which includes our ability to gather and have shared experiences. The Winn Room is a significant resource in this regard as the only free public facility in Coronado. Our commission holds events in the Winn Room as do many clubs, including the Soroptimists, Optimists, Boy Scouts, Coronado Youth Soccer, Bridge and Bay, and Crown Club. Coronado Roundtable and Coronado Cares count on the free use of the room every month. In 2019, at least 16 lectures and musical events exceeded official seating capacity, not including the entire popular summer series that year which was ticketed to avoid overcrowding.
In order to provide more access and greater utility, the City of Coronado has been exploring a complete transformation of the Winn Room. It was built 50 years ago and is the only section of the library that has not been expanded and renovated. Access to the Winn Room is awkward, the acoustics are dreadful and management of both light and airflow are difficult. In addition, the space cannot be segmented to effectively allow for more than one event to occur at the same time.
Pre-pandemic, there were live events on a weekly basis where the community could gather and listen to live music and lectures — all for free. Although Coronado does have other venues, they are not a good fit to support the free library programs that have been held in the Winn Room. The Grand Room at the Spreckels Center, although beautiful, is not any larger. The Main Stage Theatre at Coronado High is used primarily for CoSA, CHS, and school district events. Other community users, like the Coronado Island Film Festival, may use the facility when available but need to pay the custodial and theatre staffing costs to CUSD. The other public venue is the Nautilus Room at the Community Center which has a high utilization for events and weddings by groups that are willing and able to pay for space.
We believe that coming out of the pandemic, our community will value even more the opportunities to gather and enjoy events together. We envision a larger multi-use facility with seating for over 200 people, optimized for music, film, and the spoken word; a space allowing for multiple simultaneous events and with outdoor decks providing circulation and outdoor performance opportunities; a facility that will allow us to offer lectures and performances not possible with the current limited capacity.
The Cultural Arts Commission encourages you to learn more about The Winn proposal and the vision to upgrade this facility for community use for years to come. The Library now has storyboards explaining the proposal and graphics depicting the two architectural concepts.
You can also review and comment online at Comment Coronado at www.commentcoronado.org. Coronado deserves a facility that meets the usage and desires of its citizens – today and for the future. Your Cultural
Arts Commission believes this is a Winn Win for Everyone!
Helen Kupka – Coronado Cultural Arts Chair
Deb Kaller – Coronado Cultural Arts Vice-Chair
Coronado Film Festival
Coronado Community Band
Coronado Music Festival
CoSA (Coronado School of the Arts)