May 14, 2009
WICHITA, KS — Struggling to stay relevant in a competitive downtown, the Old Town Theatre undergoes some renovations.
Work has begun on a $1 million renovation of the Old Town Warren Theatre, creating what its owners believe is the first all-digital movie theater in Kansas.
When completed in late June, the Old Town Warren will be converted into a 7-auditorium digital multi-purpose facility offering everything from movies to Super Bowl showings and the latest in interactive gaming.
It’s a new, more focused business model that owner Bill Warren hopes will be profitable within two years.
Read the full story in the Wichita Eagle.
April 29, 2009
POMONA, CA —The Pomona Fox Theater reopened with a fundraiser event on April 18, 2009 along with a dinner served by onsite caterer Saffron, which will also have a retail space in the project. Film and stage actress Carol Channing was the guest of honor at the event, where she — along with members of the Tessier family which coordinated the reconstruction — cut the officlal ribbon opening the theater and later performed onstage.
Images from the opening night are available for viewing and purchase online at the website of Michael J. Elderman, a photographer from nearby Riverside, California, who has been documenting both the Pomona and Riverside Fox Theaters as they go through the process of becoming performing arts centers for their respective communities. His website is: www.mjeldermanphoto.ifp3.com
Elderman will also publish a book about the Riverside Fox, which is planning its re-opening gala for January, 2010, the 81st anniversary of the dedication of the original theater. The book will include both artistic and documentary photos of the Riverside Fox, along with a brief history of the uses of the theater, an essay about the preservation of historic buildings, and a critical commentary about Elderman’s art photography in the three projects he is currently photographing.
Elderman can be contacted through the website, or directly at
Los Angeles Times link
April 27, 2009
ARKADELPHIA, AR — After years as the Print Mania building, the Old Royal Theater is coming back.
Last week, the city of Arkadelphia closed the purchase on the Print Mania building, which was previously the Old Royal Theater. The site was originally an art deco style theater built in 1932. Plans for renovations are currently in the works, beginning with moving out the contents of the print shop and then hiring an architect to restore the building with an eye for its former style but with all the modern amenities.
“It has to be state-of-the-art sound, state-of-the-art visual and it has to be a destination,” said Jimmy Bolt, city manager and the spearhead for the project.
Read the full story in The Oracle.
April 3, 2009
March 3, 2009
PITTSBURGH, PA — Gaming revenue will be used to save the New Granada Theatre.
A $1.1 million project to stabilize the iconic New Granada Theater in the Hill District got its final piece of funding today.
The Allegheny County Community Infrastructure and Tourism Board, set up to dole out $80 million in state casino gambling revenues over the next decade, awarded $91,000 today to the Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation to complete the funding to help shore up the building.
Read the full story in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
December 8, 2008
PHILADELPHIA, PA — Friends of the Boyd are excited to share with you color drawings of the gorgeous CARPETS that were made for the Boyd Theatre when it opened in 1928, and will again be woven for the movie palace IF the restoration project begins again! We had black and white photos of the original carpets, but colors had to be determined.
In the auditorium and adjoining foyers in 1928, was a beautiful carpet with a French Art Deco design in an ORGANIC pattern. Its colors were found from a surviving piece discovered in 2005 underneath a concession stand serving the balcony. Architects Martinez & Johnson redeveloped the carpet so it can return to the Boyd!
December 5, 2008
SANIBEL ISLAND, FLORIDA — The Island Cinema has reopened under new ownership and after an extensive five-month renovation.
During the renovation, the entire two-screen theater was completely gutted, including the electrical system, with nothing left except for the projector booth door.
Each auditorium features 60 soft, extra-wide, leather-like rocking seats, a new digital projector, nine surround-sound speakers and three ceiling fans, with new air conditioning throughout.
November 24, 2008
WASHINGTON, DC — Not only was the Tivoli Theater saved, but its rebirth also helped revitalize a neighborhood. This piece looks at other theaters as well and their place in their respective communities.
Pat Myer and her husband were newlyweds when they started fighting to save the Tivoli Theater. When the Columbia Heights theater finally reopened in 2005, the couple had long since celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary.
“It was a long commitment,” says Myer, describing her work to save the nearly 85-year-old historic theater. “It consumed us for a long time. It would be nothing for me to spend 20 or 30 hours a week working on Tivoli issues.”
A long-fought battle indeed, but she says the result was well worth it. Today Columbia Heights has transformed — restaurants, boutiques and even a Target now stand in an area once plagued by gang violence — thanks in no small part to the restored Tivoli Theater and the efforts of Myer and her “Save the Tivoli” group.
Read the full story in the Washington Business Journal.
November 20, 2008
LA GRANGE, IL — Not everyone was happy in La Grange when the Village President broke a tied vote to provide $1 million for the renovation of theLa Grange Theatre.
One of the town’s board members said she’s had sleepless nights since the vote to give the four-screen theater the money. However the president thinks it will serve as an entertainment magnet to draw people to nearby shops and restaurants
Technically, the village is purchasing an easement on the facade to preserve it in perpetuity. If the theater ceases to operate, the owners are required to buy back the easement.
The owners have already invested $350,000 and has promised another $650,000 to finish the renovations in 12 to 18 months starting in 2009. The local business association has pledged $50,000 to help replace the marquee.
Read more in Suburban Life.
November 17, 2008
MT. LEBANON, PA — Fundraising to renovate the Denis Theatre is going slower than expected. $238,000 has been raised, but its non-profit board had hoped to raise $1 million by the end of the year.
The Denis Theatre Foundation received its first six-figure gift of $100,000 last Oct. 29th, but it seems unlikely to make this year’s goal.
An estimated $3 million will be needed for an extensive renovation to reopen the 1938 theater closed in 2004. The theater went non-profit earlier this year.
Read more in The Almanac.
(Thanks to macwagen for providing the photo.)