Thursday, August 21, 2008

Fired Up, Ready to Go!

The Prismatic Electric fountain
Denver Colorado, August 19, 2008."The fountain on City Park Ferrill Lake sprang back to life Tuesday night in colorful bursts of water that gushed like fireworks -- just as it did a century ago, the last time the Democratic Convention came to Denver. William Jennings Bryan was the nominee.
As the Denver Municipal Band played 'Stars and Stripes Forever,' hundreds cheered the ceremonial relighting of the city's dancing lights in the lake tonight. Columns of water colored red, white and blue burst against the charcoal night, like fireworks, then the 90-foot Old Faithful geyser rose from the middle to salute its return to the city.
Denverites cooed at every change in color in the dancing spires, minutes after Mayor John Hickenlooper told the crowd, 'This is part of our history; now it's part of our future.'

The original was created by the famed designer Frederick W. Darling. 'Denver becomes the first city to ever recreate his work,' said Larry Kerecman, a design engineer who founded the Friends of the Electric Fountain and a consultant for the project. 'There's no other fountain like it in the world.'
From mid-May through September, the fountain will put on a different show each half hour. It had been dark for more than a decade, limping along, falling apart from age and use, By the 1990s the fountain pumped out only a single unchanging stream, and eventually that broke, too.
The Prismatic Electric Fountain at City Park was originally installed in Ferril Lake in 1908. The fountain made its debut on May 30, and Denverites delighted to the modern technology.
In the park's pavilion tower, a city employee sat at a rolltop desk and pulled and pushed levers to choreograph 12 separate geysers and 11 brightly colored beams in a dance set to the music of the city band. More than 4,400 gallons of water a minute sprayed through the fountain across the 1,500-watt pillars of colored lights. The new fountain is run by computer software and LED lights that consume 80% less energy than the old fountain, which in 1908 required three men and a rowboat to operate."

The original fountain
This park is funky. The homeless live there. A magic transformation, indeed. I know it won't disturb their sleep. Forward we go!
Denver Post: Joey Bunch. Rocky Mt. News: John Ensslin


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