LRT fundraising not hopeful

August 17, 2007 11:00 pm

Well, my friends, it is time to bring you up-to-date on how the fundraising is going for Lighthouse Repertory Theatre to buy Red's Twin Cinema building.

It doesn't look too hopeful at this point in time but the final curtain has not yet come down. On Aug. 31, we need $95,000 more in escrow to start the proceedings. Through all of our fundraisers and donations, we will be able to add another $60,000 to that down payment. That leaves us $35,000 short.

The Thomas family (sellers) have been very kind in extending this deadline and making other concessions. The fact is, they need their money too. They have agreed to carry the balance themselves once the down payment is in. We thank them for their patience and consideration.

Many others have worked diligently to help us achieve our goal. Thanks to Ming Tree Realty, Lyndol Mitchell and Donna Zorn for their tireless efforts; Soroptimist Int. of Crescent City for the largest local donation to date; all of the generous contributions from local residents; the messages of support and encouragement from the community; but also for the nine hard-working LRT board members who have worked tirelessly to get us where we are.

As you know, every play or production needs an audience. You, my friends, are LRT's audience. You are the ones that keep us going with your enthusiasm and encouragement. We all want to bring more culture and activity to the downtown area. What I hear from most of you is that you want to see the theater built in 1952, known as the Pic, revitalized and made beautiful and useful again. That is what we want too.

Of course we will continue with ways to make money for the building fund because getting into the building is just the beginning. We want to make it safe and comfortable for you and that will take even more money. Yes, we are constantly seeking grants, thanks to Jennifer Henion. Yes, we will be touching some of our local retailers for help with material goods. Yes, we may even ask for help from local contractors because this building must be made safe and up to code.

In exchange for this help, we intend to please our audiences with more productions, maybe up to six each year, and provide more variety in our play selection. Our next production will be "Arsenic and Old Lace," scheduled for Nov. 9, 10, 11 and Nov. 16, 17, 18. The Spring musical will be "Wizard of Oz" the first two weekends in April, 2008.

Let me finalize by saying, "building or no building, the show must go on!"

But, it surely would be great to meet that Aug. 31 deadline with an additional $35,000.

Joan Buhler is the president of Lighthouse Repertory Theatre.