Ever since Bonney Lake High School was built, its drama club students would take a trip down to Sumner High School to use its performing arts center, because they didn’t have one of their own.
But come next year, that will change.
On April 3, Sumner School District celebrated the groundbreaking of its Bonney Lake High School Performing Arts Center, which was one of the projects approved by voters in a 2016 capital projects bond.
“I am so incredibly proud and excited to help usher in a new era for Bonney Lake High School students and this community where arts can grow and thrive,” Bonney Lake High School Principal Cris Turner said at the groundbreaking. “This new (performing arts center) has been a vision for many years.”
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The center will be located on the northern edge of the Bonney Lake High School campus. At 15,523 square feet, it will seat 550 people and have various educational spaces. Construction costs for the project close in on $10 million. The district is adding updated security features to the school and covers for the home seating bleachers. All together, projects at the high school total $14.6 million.
The center will be available for rent to community groups as well, district staff said.
“This facility will enrich the lives of everyone, not just at Bonney Lake High School, but in all the plateau and surrounding communities,” Turner said. “It will bring many cultural events that will add educational value for the years to come.”
Bonney Lake students — especially those in the performing arts — expressed their excitement at the groundbreaking event.
“For a long time we’ve been using the (performing arts center) down at Sumner High School, and it’s a fantastic place, but boy, am I glad that we’re gonna have our own,” Bonney Lake student Jadin Bassett said. “It’s gonna cut down on travel time (and) we’re going to be able to practice there during the school day.”
“It’s really going to improve not just our performance ability but the intrigue to the society around us (and) our classmates,” he added.
Student Kayla Bent is a senior at Bonney Lake High School, but said she’ll be visiting to check out the center after she graduates.
“I, unfortunately, haven’t had a performing arts center for the years I’ve been here doing theater, but it’s going to be a good opportunity for our future theater kids to have their own space and feel comfortable on their own stage, finally,” Bent said.
The center is being built by Erickson McGovern Architects and the Berschauer Group, and is expected to open in winter of 2018. For more information, visit sumnersd.org.
“For me, this performing arts center isn’t just another addition to a building, this center is a monument for myself, for the other people around me, for the other drama club members and for the future students to come in and involve themselves in this facility,” Bonney Lake senior Bryce Gaskill said.