An alert reader noticed two curious things when passing Hartman Arena recently.
First, the wind turbine that owner Wink Hartman Sr. has struggled with since opening the arena is now gone.
“The windmill, of course, never worked right from day one,” Hartman said.
His hope had been to power his Park City arena with it.
He even won a clean air award, in part for the turbine and in part due to other green efforts, from the Regional Energy and Sustainability Conference held at Wichita State University in 2010.
Hartman said Newton-based Enertech Inc. sold him the turbine as new, but he said it actually had been built with used parts.
According to a 2010 lawsuit, Hartman hoped to have the turbine operational by the March 2009 Alan Jackson inaugural concert at the arena. By December 2009, the arena demanded that Enertech have the turbine operational by the end of the year or refund its money.
Enertech responded by saying the arena had inadequate amperage service, so the arena spent $23,000 to upgrade the service.
In September 2010, the turbine malfunctioned and flung oil or something similar over the arena. The problem continued through October. The arena revoked its acceptance of the turbine and asked for at least $621,310 in damages, which the court awarded. However, Enertech then declared bankruptcy.
“We spent a fortune, unfortunately, and (were) taken advantage of,” Hartman said.
“I was concerned about . . . it falling down or hurting somebody. It was a big liability, so we tore it down and threw it in the trash.”
The other curious thing at the arena is a J.P. Weigand & Sons sign out front.
Hartman said the arena is not for sale. The land in front of it is, though, if someone wants to put a business there.
Weigand’s Morrie Sheets, who used to work for Hartman, is the broker.
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