Boise & Garden City

Thousands turned out to hear David Brooks speak at Boise State

The line to get in to see David Brooks speak Tuesday evening.
The line to get in to see David Brooks speak Tuesday evening.

A line extended out of the Morrison Center Tuesday evening as a crowd waited to see New York Times columnist David Brooks speak as part of Boise State’s Distinguished Lecture Series.

About 3,000 people attended the free event, with about 900 of them sitting in overflow rooms. Another estimated 200 folks were turned away, according to Boise State spokesman Greg Hahn. The Boise State Honors College presents the free lecture series.

According to its website, the Morrison Center seats 2,037.

“It’s really been important to the honors college ... to make this available to everyone,” Hahn said, noting that since it’s free, sometimes event staff will need to “scramble” to accommodate attendees.

The series has an average attendance of 800 people, but the last set of speakers have drawn larger crowds. In fall of 2015 about 1,100 people watched author Margaret Atwood speak at the Student Union Building’s Jordan Ballroom and about 1,000 people watched Australia’s first female prime minister speak. More than 2,000 people watched author Salman Rushdie speak in the fall of 2014, Hahn said.

Attendees posted to social media about the event, partly due to its popularity. Some complained about the long lines and sound or video problems in the overflow rooms, and others said they were happy to see the high turnout.

Biggest crowd ever for Boise State's Distinguished Lecture Series. David Brooks (New York Times and PBS).packed the Morrison Center and several large lecture halls.

Posted by Ray Stark on Tuesday, September 27, 2016

GOOD NEWS BAD NEWSExciting to see that a David Brooks speech on a Tuesday night in Boise can jam-pack The Morrison...

Posted by Eric Valentine on Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Erin Fenner: 208-377-6207, @erinfenner