Columbian Theatre, Museum & Art Center
521 Lincoln Avenue,
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At the close of the 1893 Chicago Worlds Fair, JC Rogers brought paintings and other artifacts back to Wamego to adorn his new music hall. It was a venue for vaudeville, drama, masque balls, concerts and community events. In 1912 silent films first played the Columbian, followed by “talkies” in 1929. It remained the community’s center through WWII.
In 1950 The Columbian closed and was dark for 40 years. The only thing that saved it from destruction was that a furniture store remained open on the ground floor, motivating the owners to keep the roof in good repair. Today, a $1.8 million renovation has restored the building to a new level of elegance as a home for the arts and, once again, a place for the entire community to gather.
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