The original scoreboard from the Miracle on Ice will hang inside the U.S. Olympic Museum.
The museum’s board is now inviting the public to have a hand in what hangs outside the structure, which is 75 percent complete and due to open prior to the 2020 Summer Games in Tokyo.
As part of a community campaign launched Tuesday, donors can sponsor a diamond-shaped aluminum panel on the south side of the building for $1,000. Roughly 10,000 of the panels will be available. The panels will be searchable on the USOM’s website with a personalized digital inscription.
“Because of the unique architecture, each panel is uniquely different,” said USOM chief executive officer Chris Liedel, who joined the project after serving as president of Smithsonian Enterprises in Washington D.C. “It is as individual as each of our athletes.”
Other museum privileges such as early admission will also come with being a Diamond Donor.
This was the centerpiece of community campaign, which will fund a board-directed endowment to provide financial stability in the years after the museum opens and allow for capital improvements as well as new programs, appearances by athletes and tailoring the museum’s theme toward whatever Olympic Games are on the horizon.
“Catalytic projects like this one are uncommon,” Colorado Springs Mayor John Suthers said, “but they’re incredibly beneficial and they must be supported by our community.”
The $1,000 price point for the panels was intended to help the endowment reach half of its eventual $20 million goal.
For those outpriced by that figure, USOM board chair Dave Ogrean said less expensive opportunities will be offered in the future.
In a Tuesday morning presentation, Suthers shared the latest projections from the museum, which hopes to welcome more than 350,000 visitors annually and generate $28.3 million in sales tax revenue over 30 years.
Liedel shared updates on some of the artifacts the museum is targeting. The biggest so far is the scoreboard from Lake Placid, N.Y., which has shipped to Colorado Springs and will show the score when the United States upset the Soviet Union in the classic 1980 hockey game.
Another is a gold medal won by sprinter Betty (Schwartz) Robinson, who captured the first women’s 100-meter title in Antwerp at 16 in 1928. She was then injured so severely in a plane crash that she was taken to the coroner, as it was believed she was dead. She then recovered, but was unable to kneel into starting blocks. Still, she represented the United States in Berlin in 1936 and added a gold in the 4x100 relay.
It is stories like this that Liedel hopes to share in displays kept fresh through funding from the endowment.
The 60,000 square-foot museum is going up on the south side of downtown, overlooking to its west America the Beautiful Park and Pikes Peak.