University Box Office helps to organize meetings during the Camp Fire


Laxson Auditorium usually hosts recitals, plays, concerts and musical productions but during the Camp Fire, it was the location for the Town of Paradise meetings and Cal Fire briefings. Photo credit: Olyvia Simpson

During the two weeks of the Camp Fire emergency, many of the meetings and briefings providing information to the community were held at Laxson Auditorium.

Box Office coordinator Christopher Zinna said that Cal Fire and the Town of Paradise contacted Stephen Cummins, director of Chico Performances, who then contacted the University Box Office to help organize the events.

“At the beginning, the meetings were held every day,” Zinna said. “It would be Cal Fire one day, the Town of Paradise the next day.”

Both Cal Fire and the Town of Paradise prepared the information to update people on the containment of the fire each day, it was up to Zinna and his staff members to make sure everything was organized and ready to go.

“We were there to support them in whatever way possible,” Zinna said.

“The main reason they reached out to us was because we are the largest indoor area with AC,” Zinna said of the Laxson location. Acker Gym was also considered as the location, but their AC is nonexistent and the exhaust system wasn’t working properly with all of the smoke, Zinna explained.

“We had about 750 people attend the first Cal Fire meeting, and the first town hall meeting was just about the same,” Zinna said.

As far as meetings go, there aren’t any more planned but “We’re here to support and help the community as much as possible,” Zinna said.

“Paradise is our neighboring town so we want to help as much as possible.”

Olyvia Simpson can be reached at [email protected] or @OSimpson15 on Twitter