Tuesday, August 26, 2008

How will Invesco venue work out?

WE'VE MOVED! Democratic Convention Watch is now at http://www.DemocraticConventionWatch.com

We'll be getting a lot these reports as we get close to Thursday:

In a blur of 20-hour workdays, a crew nearly 300 strong is stringing cable, laying walkways and building the dais that will transform an open-air football stadium into the launching pad for the final stage of Sen. Barack Obama's presidential campaign.

Staging experts plan a striking backdrop for Sen. Obama to accept his Democratic Party's nomination Thursday night at the 50-yard-line of Invesco Field at Mile High, the home of the Denver Broncos football team. Details are closely held.
The campaign chose to stage the event at Invesco Field, rather than in the Pepsi Center indoor arena where the rest of the convention is being held, so they could accommodate bigger crowds. Tens of thousands of everyday voters will pack the stands, in addition to delegates and donors.

The potential upside: A made-for-TV moment in front of a revved-up crowd of 80,000.

The potential downside: The larger-than-life scale could aid Republicans in their quest to portray Sen. Obama as a celebrity candidate more suited to drawing adoring throngs than governing.
It's a gamble in part because of the weather. For now, the forecast looks good: Thursday should be sunny and in the 80s.

"Things can change," said meteorologist Eric Thaler of the National Weather Service. Denver skies, especially in late summer, are notoriously unpredictable. This weekend, five tornados hit surrounding suburbs. Four years ago, the temperature here dipped to 42 degrees on Aug. 28, the date of the speech. That date also has seen gusts of winds as strong as 53 miles per hour, thunderstorms, a lightning strike and hail three-quarters of an inch in diameter.

In 1875, a cloud of locusts descended, so thick that they darkened the sun and so hungry that they destroyed every garden in Denver.