VETERANS MEMORIAL: Fourteen months and $42 million later, transformation of Veterans Memorial is complete
Fourteen months and $42 million later, the renovations at Veterans Memorial Auditorium in downtown Des Moines are complete. Polk County's new convention center opened for business today and the public was invited to check out the changes. “People are going to be really amazed I think when they walk in through the doors,” says Angela Connolly of the Polk County Board of Supervisors “It`s very impressive,” agrees Bob Henderson. “It looks new, it smells new. It`s new,” says Jane Harswick. The facility has a new longer name. It is now called “Veterans Memorial Community Choice Credit Union Convention Center. The state of the art convention center has 27 meeting rooms and a brand new ballroom. “It`s a little emotional. It`s just such a great place to come and visit and recall all your memories. You`ll still be able to do that and hopefully create new memories,” says Connolly. “They can attach the official name to it but I think people will always call it Vets,” says Harswick. “Being a veteran, I was in the Air Force for 23 years and so that`s kinda important to me,” says Henderson. One of the biggest changes to the facility is the addition of the ballroom on the third floor. It can be used for weddings, banquets, meetings and even some sporting events. Officials say Chows Gymnastics has already booked it for a meet.