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Historic Gene Harris Bandshell in Julia Davis Park damaged in human-caused fire; restoration planned

The historic Gene Harris Bandshell in Boise's Julia Davis Park caught fire on Monday and was seriously damaged; Boise fire officials say the blaze was human-caused. (Idaho Statesman / Screenshot/Dana Oland)
The historic Gene Harris Bandshell in Boise's Julia Davis Park caught fire on Monday and was seriously damaged; Boise fire officials say the blaze was human-caused. (Idaho Statesman / Screenshot/Dana Oland)

The historic Gene Harris Bandshell in Julia Davis Park caught fire last night, and was heavily damaged; the city of Boise announced today that Boise Fire Department investigators have determined the fire was human-caused. The investigation has been turned over to the Boise Police Department.

“We are deeply saddened to see the damage done to this historic Boise landmark,” said city parks chief Doug Holloway. “We are hopeful the Gene Harris Bandshell can be restored so that we can continue to host community events and create lasting memories in Julia Davis Park for generations to come.

The city parks department reports that the bandshell was insured and the city has “every intention of repairing the beloved community gathering place,” but a damage assessment must be completed before a restoration plan can be figured out.

The bandshell dates back to 1928; it was built in a mission revival style with a stucco interior and tile roof, reminiscent of the then-recently completed Boise Depot nearby, which opened in 1925. In 2000, the Julia Davis Park Bandshell was renamed after legendary Boise jazz musician and bandleader Gene Harris, who loved playing there.



Betsy Z. Russell
Betsy Z. Russell joined The Spokesman-Review in 1991. She currently is a reporter in the Boise Bureau covering Idaho state government and politics, and other news from Idaho's state capital.

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