James R. Fennell & Lola S. Scobey | Build Ivywild

Colorado Springs’ Ivywild School celebrates new life as a mixed-use commercial center

By: Gazette Telegraph

Historical Portrayer Richard Marold, performing as American prospector Winfield Scott Stratton, gives crowds a brief history of Colorado Springs and the Ivywild School during the grand opening of the Ivywild School, the new home of the Bristol Brewing Company, Friday, August 16, 2013. Michael Ciaglo, The Gazette

Historical Portrayer Richard Marold, performing as American prospector Winfield Scott Stratton, gives crowds a brief history of Colorado Springs and the Ivywild School during the grand opening of the Ivywild School, the new home of the Bristol Brewing Company, Friday, August 16, 2013. Michael Ciaglo, The Gazette

Beer, sausage and baked goods have replaced books, pencils and backpacks at the former Ivywild Elementary School in Colorado Springs.

But one thing remains unchanged: The building that’s now simply called the Ivywild School remains the heart of the popular Ivywild neighborhood several blocks south of downtown

The remodeling of the 20,000-square-foot building from a vacant school into a mixed-used, commercial and community center, completed about a month ago, was celebrated Friday with grand opening ceremonies attended by more than 200 people.

A beer christening and the cutting of a 24-foot-long ribbon of sausage links were among the highlights of the event.

The school transformation was the idea of partners Mike Bristol of Bristol Brewing Co., Blue Star restaurant owner Joe Coleman and architect Jim Fennell – a vision they launched three years ago.

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