1500 East Lake Street,
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Built on the site of the 1909 Royal Theatre (later Seventh Ward Theatre/Rosebud Theatre, Reno Theatre). It was given a makeover in 1924 to the plans of architectural firm Ekman, Holm & Company and renamed Avalon Theatre. Seating was provided for 300. In 1937, the theatre was enlarged to the plans of architect Perry E. Crosier and given an Streamline Moderne style. The facade features an interesting hulking corner tower with neon light boxes.
It became the Fine Arts Theater from 1955. By 1982 and until 1985 it operated as an adult porn movie theatre, known as the Avalon Fine Arts Theater.
Since 1986 it has housed a theater puppet ‘company’ called ‘In the Heart of the Beast’. They create and perform large scale puppet performances. They are very active in the community and “employ” many volunteers and school children. The highlight of their year is the annual May Day parade.
It is a great renewal effort for a building that had become a nuisance to the community. The HOBT is wonderful program that is one of the gems of Lake Street.
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