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Archive for Saturday, April 9, 2011

25 years ago: Progress on new Liberty Hall reaches outside facade

April 9, 2011

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From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for April 9, 1986:

  • A year’s worth of renovations had been going on inside the old Opera House building (now Liberty Hall), but partners Charles Oldfather and David Millstein were now conducting work on the public facade of the historic structure. The partners admitted that they were financing a “risky venture,” but they were confident that the building’s grand opening would take place on the fourth weekend of October with its first live theater production, “The Ballad of Black Jack.” Oldfather said that he hoped to open the hall even earlier, perhaps in mid-summer, for movie showings.
  • Lawrence’s new handgun ordinance was still causing heated debate at city commission meetings. An irate resident, speaking out at a meeting after having written a letter to the newspaper editor calling the commissioners “incompetent” and the new law “ridiculous,” obviously annoyed commissioner David Longhurst, who had originally proposed the new law. Longhurst responded to the resident at the meeting, saying that if he would read the law carefully he wouldn’t be “talking like an idiot,” and at one point he uttered a strong and disparaging expletive, which was audible to several in the audience. At the next meeting, a local attorney and handgun-law opponent said that Longhurst owed the man a public apology. The attorney, who said he represented the National Rifle Assn., also said that Longhurst should not continue serving as a commissioner.

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