UAS Pavilion is named after John and Lily Noyes

UAS News Release: July 18, 2003

The grand opening and dedication of the UAS John & Lily Noyes Pavilion will begin at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, July 25, 2003, at the Auke Lake campus. Directly following the ceremony at 8 p.m. is the premiere of the new David Hunsaker play, “The Three-Way River.”

“We wanted something that would really show off the new Pavilion, which is this wonderful performing venue,” Hunsaker said. “We have the great honor of being the first performance in there.”

The structure of the open-air theater was completed in April of 2003, and additional features such as a sound system and seating are currently being added.

The Pavilion is named after John and Lily Noyes, former residents of Juneau who were close friends with Territorial Governor Benjamin Franklin Heintzleman. In 1956, John Rutherford Noyes died from injuries suffered in a plane crash near Nome, Alaska. Noyes Mountain, in the Mentasta Mountains about 50 miles south of Tok, is also named in Noyes’ honor.

In 1948, John Noyes was assigned as Commissioner of Roads for Alaska, stationed in Juneau, and from 1948 to 1951 he supervised the modernization of the state’s road system at a cost in excess of $50 million. By 1951, the Alaska Road Commission had been reorganized along modern lines, road standards were modernized, 300 miles of pavement were laid (the first paved roads in Alaska), and the program was laid out and has been followed up to the present time.

“We were very excited when the Noyes family approached us about making a significant donation,” said UAS Chancellor John Pugh. “The addition of the Pavilion brings us closer to our goal of being the leading liberal arts college in the state, by providing a spectacular performance venue. We hope the community will embrace it as a place to both perform and appreciate the arts in Juneau.”

“The community really came forward to support this project,” said Lynne Johnson, UAS director of development and university relations. “The whole community, business, charitable foundations and individuals all gave generously. I think that is a testament to the importance the community puts on education and the arts in Southeast. We are very thankful for their support.”

“The Three-Way River” combines Russian, Tlingit and Appalachian stories to produce what Hunsaker calls a “journey into the unknown.” The premiere of “The Three-Way River” will make use of the Pavilion’s natural setting on the UAS Auke Lake campus, and unique features of the theater will allow exciting elements to be introduced to the play, such as fire and water.

“ Fire is a big element in this,” Hunsaker said. “We’re going to have water on stage. We wanted something that would be a big spectacle, colorful and bright. And we’ve got to be pretty colorful and bright to match the backdrop, which is this stunning view that the audience will have.”