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“As Springfield continued to wither..?” Has the author of this write-up visited Springfield in the past half decade or so? The opposite of “withering” is currently occurring in Metro Center Springfield.
With all of the new arts and entertainment organizations that have formed in Springfield within the past few years (Apremont Arts jumps immediately to mind;) and all of the bohemians, LGBT residents, and empty-nesters who have recently moved to Metro Center condominiums, in my opinion, this city is likely to “take off” within the next few years (especially in light of the billions of dollars in infrastructure, medical, entertainment, and medical construction.)
As to the Paramount, it was recently purchased by Herbie Flores' Farmer Workers' Council – a group interested in bringing more arts to Springfield. Currently, the former Hippodrome is being renovated to the tune of $1.725 million. According to Mr. Flores, the Paramount will continue to host movies and concerts, but will also feature a new coffeehouse and upscale Spanish restaurant.
I realize that a lot of people who haven’t been to Springfield recently probably do not understand or know much about the renaissance currently underway in the city; however, in my opinion, many will likely know soon.
The Bing, in my opinion, is an EXCELLENT renovated theater — personally, it is one of my favorite theaters anywhere.
When I first saw the marquee and then decided to enter it for the first time — personally, I got a feeling like I was entering a very special place. The faces, although not familiar to me, were all smiling and nice — and the film presented was thought-provoking.
The Bing’s current owner deserves commendation on commendation, in my opinion. This would not have happened without a genuine love for Springfield, for theaters, and a sincere sense of community (team) spirit.
The Bing, I believe, is catalyzing the new coffeeshop culture/hip restaurant scene near The X, which is totally homegrown, (e.g. Three Cafe.) Suddenly, it’s an arts neighborhood!
The Bing, in my opinion, is yet another example of Springfield’s recent resurgence.