Hartford – There are many chapters in the story of the Chandelier Ballroom in Hartford.
Built in 1928, the facility was a popular music venue before it was leased to the federal government in 1944 and used as a prisoner-of-war camp, housing 350 Germans captured during World War II. After the war, the Ballroom continued to be a music hall and now serves as a favorite banquet facility for dinner auctions, high school proms, corporate leisure events and weddings.
But the most recent chapter involves an old boiler and a collaboration with Focus on Energy.
In January 2018, the Chandelier Ballroom’s old, large, inefficient boiler finally gave out. The facility’s long-time HVAC contractor, W.H. Jacklin in Milwaukee, is a Focus on Energy Trade Ally contractor and suggested management look into using the program.
An Energy Advisor with Focus on Energy worked with the Trade Ally and the Hartford Historic Preservation Foundation (HHPF), which manages the ballroom, and suggested looking into whether the facility qualified for Focus on Energy’s Small Business Program. The program offers enhanced incentives for small businesses like the Chandelier Ballroom.
“[The energy advisor] was a delight to work with and helped us along the way to find the best Focus on Energy program to use, complete our paperwork and schedule an inspection of the completed project,” said Michele Price, Executive Director of the HHPF.
The Chandelier Ballroom replaced its old, inefficient boiler with two smaller, more efficient models. Nearly $8,000 in incentives from Focus on Energy helped offset the cost of that investment. In addition to the incentives, the customer is seeing the cost savings in its monthly bills. Over their lifetime, the new boilers will save enough energy to power 31 homes for a full year.
“We also have peace of mind knowing that our new, more efficient boilers will not fail us. Having two high-efficiency boilers instead of one larger inefficient boiler provides us with the security [of] knowing that if one would fail we have a backup to get us through the night,” Price said. In addition, only one boiler needs to run on some milder heating days.
Hartford Historic Center directors are now planning more energy efficiency upgrades, including installation of a new HVAC unit later this year at a different property they manage. They also recommend Focus on Energy business programs for other potential customers.
The Chandelier Ballroom is a customer of We Energies, the largest of the 107 utilities that fund the Focus on Energy program.
A recent evaluation report found every $1 invested in Focus on Energy programs creates $5.93 in benefits for Wisconsin, including economic benefits, reduced energy costs, and reduced pollution.
About Focus on Energy
Focus on Energy is Wisconsin utilities' statewide energy efficiency and renewable resource program funded by the state's investor-owned energy utilities and participating municipal and electric cooperative utilities. Focus on Energy works with eligible Wisconsin residents and businesses to install cost-effective energy efficiency and renewable energy projects. Focus on Energy information, resources and financial incentives help to implement projects that otherwise would not be completed. Its efforts help Wisconsin residents and businesses manage rising energy costs, promote in-state economic development, protect our environment and control Wisconsin's growing demand for electricity and natural gas. For more information call 800.762.7077 or visit www.focusonenergy.com.
About the Chandelier Ballroom
The unique architecture and warm ambiance of the Chandelier Ballroom make it Hartford's premiere reception hall and one of the most elegant and impressive in southeastern Wisconsin.
The Chandelier Ballroom
We Energies (Wisconsin Electric Power Company)