The West Side Nut Club makes major entrance improvements at Mesker Amphitheater

Local News

The West Side Nut Club hopes to breathe new life into the Mesker Amphitheater by making major improvements to the venues’ entrance. 

Every year the club president gets to choose a special project. 

With little maintenance and a rise in safety concerns, the Mesker Amphitheater became the number one choice.

The Mesker Amphitheatre used to be the place to go for a good time.

“Everybody’s got a story for Mesker. Everybody remembers a concert a show or even the Mesker movies they did for a while,” says Eddie Dietz, West Side Nut Club publicity chairman.

But if you visit the historic venue today, it would be hard to imagine it as a go-to destination with boarded up shelters and rusted equipment.

“We’ve maintained the facility. That’s to say we’ve cut the grass but there are elements of the facility that obviously are unsafe,” Lloyd Winnecke.

This inspired the 2019 west side nut club president to undergo a 30 thousand dollar project to make the theatre entrance more secure and presentable.

The project includes removing leaves, repainting the entrance, installing new gates to allow access to the bathroom,  and adding lighting to the underground bridge for walkers and runners.

“We would love nothing more than to restore it into an outdoor performance venue.”

But there’s one thing preventing city officials from making it happen. 

“It takes a lot of money right now. We don’t have a lot of money, so our plan is to let it sit there until the point where we do have the money or able to raise it through a public-private partnership or whatever means.”Lloyd Winnecke

“I realize there’s financial constraints and stuff like that, but it would be a great thing to bring it back again,” says Tim Mitsdarffer, project chairman.

“Maybe it has a purpose down the road. Right now, our main concern is just getting this more presentable, something the community can be halfway proud of and go ‘hey that at least looks nice and it’s usable.’ we got peace and the nut club is able to help out with that,” says Dietz.

Nut Club members say there is still a lot of work to be done before the final entrance reveal this Saturday.

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(This story was originally published on May 15, 2019)

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