Fox Event Center
123 Cajon Street,
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Opened as the West Coast Redlands Theatre in 1928, and had a seating capacity for 1,505. It was designed for the West Coast Theatres chain by leading theatre architect Lewis A. Smith. It was equipped with a Wurlitzer theatre pipe organ, which was installed in October 1928. The interior was styled in a Mission Revival treatment. In 1929, it was renamed Fox Theatre.
The theatre had a 40ft wide proscenium opening and a 32ft deep stage. In the 1940’s, the stage house was converted into a seperate theatre, known first as the Grove Theatre, later the Rainbow Theatre, and had its own separate entrance and marquee at the rear of the Fox Theatre.
About 1982, the balcony in the main auditorium was converted into two more cinemas. Around 1988, the Fox Theatre was closed. For years local preservationists hoped to turn the theatre portion of the two-story building into a performing arts center.
Housed within a 22,000-square-foot building, the theatre needed significant repairs. In 2000, the Fox Theatre was ‘For Sale’, at a price of $1.35 million. As the owners were looking for a buyer who would help restore the theatre, the asking price place no value on the building’s Fox Theatre portion because it would require significant funds to restore. The auditorium floor was leveled. By 2008, the theatre was used by a company for offices, but miracles do happen, and a new stage was installed in the former front orchestra level. The Fox Theatre reopened as the Fox Event Center, a live performance venue on July 4, 2009, accommodating 400 people sitting or 700 people standing. The former stage house (later Grove Theatre/Rainbow Theatre) is now a Caribbean restaurant.
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