You printed a letter I wrote [“Another Gated Community?”, Oct. 24] regarding a negative experience I had at the [Asheville] Civic Center. I wanted to write to let you know that Laurie Saxton with the Civic Center contacted me after my letter was printed and apologized on behalf of the Civic Center for the poor treatment that a friend and I received during the Crosby and Nash concert on Sept. 30. Ms. Saxton also asked if there was anything the Civic Center could do to make up for what had happened. I requested that I be allowed to go out on the ice before everyone else during one of the public-skating sessions that the Civic Center hosts every December. I’m not a particularly good skater, but I really love the sport and take advantage of every opportunity I have to get out on the ice. I thought it would be neat to have the whole rink to myself, if only for a few minutes, to see how fast I could go.
Ms. Saxton put me in contact with Dan Dover, who keeps track of the ice-rink schedule. He arranged a time for me to go out on the ice by myself before the first public skate of the season last Friday. I’ll never forget my first lap around the rink on the new ice. The shining white expanse of the ice, the echo of my skate blades in the huge arena, the crisp cold against my skin—all of these things are priceless. I imagined I was a child again in the Minnesota wilderness, the first one to leave footprints on the new snow. For a precious 20 minutes, I left my adult self and concerns behind and felt the sheer delight of a truly pristine experience.
I would like to thank Ms. Saxton, Mr. Dover, Randy the coordinator and all the other staff at the Civic Center who made this once-in-a-lifetime event possible. I also want to thank the Mountain Xpress for printing my initial letter. Everyone involved [turned] a negative experience for me into something positive, and I will never forget it. Thanks again.
— Karen Nilsen