NATCHITOCHES – Northwestern State University’s newest performance venue will debut this Friday during DemonFest, the annual spring music and art festival presented by KNWD. The stage at Iberville Green, former site of Sabine Hall, was developed over the last five years with input and support from the University Programming Council (formerly called the Student Activities Board), KNWD, the Student Government Association, Alumni and Development and the Student Union Life Concert Committee.
“The new stage is equipped with four anchor points which are load bearing in order to hang industrial and concert lighting,” said Yonna Pasch, director of Student Activities. “The venue will be open to recognized student organizations as well as departments and can be reserved through NSU’s Event Management System. It’s meant for concerts, but I am sure we will host many things at Iberville Green, such as Freshman Connection follies, Spring Fling crawfish boils, fraternity and sorority step shows, movies on the lawn, summer camp activities and other entertainment events.”
Planning began in 2014 when NSU was awarded $10,000 from the Patrick F. Taylor Foundation following a Lunchtime Likes competition. Students voted to use the award as seed money to develop an outdoor venue for concerts and other performances and chose the location at Iberville Green, a wide plateau next to Iberville Dining Hall and conveniently close to university residence halls. The Green has in recent years become a popular place for student events, including this weekend’s DemonFest, which will take place from 1-9 p.m. Friday, March 22.
“I’m just ecstatic to see that the stage initiative was carried on past its inception and that it’s complete and available for student use,” said John Pearce, former SGA president who spearheaded student involvement in the project and encouraging cooperation among campus groups to move it forward. “It was meant to be a focal point of student activity, and from seeing the completed stage, it looks like that’s exactly what it will be. The stage is something I knew I’d never get to use as a student because big projects take a lot of time and a lot more determination. So, my advice to the students is this: when it comes to thinking of ways to better NSU, think big; the end result may be bigger than you thought it could be.”