Donna Theatre

239 N. Third Avenue,
Sturgeon Bay, WI 54235

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DONNA Theatre; Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin.

Viewing: Photo | Street View

Opened in 1950 on Third Avenue in what had been built at the turn of the 20th century as a feed store, the 500-seat late Art Moderne style Donna (named for the first owner’s daughter) operated until 2000. The Donna and Door Theatres, which both stood on Third Avenue in downtown Sturgeon Bay, were both operated by the same family for decades.

Since the fall of 2000, the former Donna Theatre has housed the Third Avenue Playhouse, a legitimate theater.

Contributed by Bryan Krefft

Recent comments (view all 4 comments)

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on August 31, 2007 at 8:07 pm

In 1963, the Donna was operated by Delft Theaters, Inc, out of Butler, WI. John Schuyler was president and general manager. Delft also operated the Victory Drive-in in Butler, the Winnebago Drive-In in Wisconsin Dells, the Cosmo in Merrill, the Aqua in Minoqua, the Woods in Woodruff and the Al Ringling. Besides the Wisconsin theaters, Delft also operated many Michigan houses in the early sixties.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on December 2, 2008 at 9:51 pm

The December 9, 1950, issue of Boxoffice Magazine announced the recent opening of the Donna Theatre “…after many delays in construction.” The architect was named as Urban F. Peacock, of Milwaukee. The article says that “The theatre is named after Mrs. Donna Borchert, owner of the Donna and the older Door Theatre here.” A Mr. Herman Graefe was named as being the manager of both houses.

The feature on opening night was “King Solomon’s Mines” and there was also a marionette show. Mrs. Borchert, mayor Stanley Greene, and “…visiting theatre officials” gave brief talks. A glittering night for Sturgeon Bay, indeed.

thriceshy
thriceshy on June 29, 2014 at 7:31 am

First owner’s wife was Madonna aka Donna. According to his death notice (published in The Billboard, January 31, 1942) and the opinion of the court rendered June 15, 1951 in Borchert v. Mueller, his sole heirs were his wife, Madonna, his mother Minna, and his son, Roderick. His name, as it happens, was Frank Borchert, and he died January 7, 1942.

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