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Old Main bleachers are back

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Posted: Tuesday, September 25, 2012 11:36 pm | Updated: 11:31 am, Mon Jan 21, 2013.

FAIRBANKS — After decades hidden behind a wall and almost two years of reconstruction work, the bleachers are back at Old Main School, now Fairbanks City Hall.

The original wooden bleachers extend between the first floor and basement gymnasium of the 80-year-old building. The bleachers are ready for audiences and will officially open to the public with an open house Thursday night featuring a presentation of historical film clips from Old Main School.  

Restoring the bleachers is part of a larger project to restore City Hall to its original floor plan. Cleaning out the clutter stored on the bleachers took three months and workers striped paint, re-stained the wood and built a new door on the first floor of the building, Fairbanks city mayor Jerry Cleworth said. The work was done by city employees and volunteers from local painter and carpenter unions.

Main Elementary School opened in 1934, was expanded twice and served as a school until 1976. It was the administrative officers for the school district between 1976 and 1993 and became City Hall the next year. The basement is rented by the Boys and Girls Club of the Tanana Valley. 

The City Hall open house begins at 5 p.m. in the City Council Chambers and will proceed to the bleachers. 

Contact staff writer Sam Friedman at 459-7545. Follow him on Twitter, @FDNMcrime.

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