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Performing Arts Center Boosters to Hold Informational Meeting Tonight

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Inside the beautiful Sierra Theatre

By Carla Dollar
Special to SusanvilleStuff

Susanville Performing Arts Center, also called SPAC, is seeking the purchase of the Sierra Theatre originally built in 1935. SPAC’s goal is to assist in the economic and visual revitalization of Main Street, Susanville through the arts, entertainment, education, and business.

Who is SPAC? Susanville Performing Arts Center represents all of us. It is not one non-profit or another. It is a collective of individuals who are working to bring economic development to Main Street, Susanville. We know that the Sierra Theatre is closing its doors this August and the idea of another empty building feels tragic. But it can be avoided.

SPAC’s plan includes space for local performing and visual arts to utilize the space, but it expands beyond those few groups, to include professional trainings, conferences, school programs, graduations, and more. The beauty of this Susanville landmark, is that it will generate year-round opportunity for any event that requires a stage and audience.

We believe this will assist in generating economic stimulation on Main Street and spread throughout Susanville. A vibrant art community has a significant impact on local economy and there are many case studies to prove (see our Facebook for a few of those examples.)

However, we need one big donation to make this happen. The theatre can be sold to a non-profit for a minimal cost. But, to make it a community hub, it needs to have some additional remodels; an extended stage, stage lighting, theatre sound, and dressing rooms. And while we continue to host fundraisers and seek donations, efforts on our own may take a decade or so to achieve (see those case studies as evidence). We believe time is of the essence with the planned closure in August.

With help from City Council and their access to ARPA funding, we believe a one-time gift would propel SPAC into action. City Council was given ARPA funding post-Covid to help stimulate economic growth in small communities.

As the Sierra Theatre owners have worked tirelessly to provide a venue for our community, they just cannot maintain the personal losses each month. ARPA funds would help with that initial purchase and renovation. After that, SPAC has the plans and ability to generate income to maintain the Theatre. And we believe help revitalize Main Street and to help those that are already working tirelessly to bring economic development to Susanville.

Please join us today, May 28th, at 5:30p.m., at the Sierra Theatre for SPAC LIVE! This will be a short informative meeting to share with our community what we are asking from City Council. But we promise it will be filled with live entertainment, so you can experience first-hand what it will feel like to have live performance in our beloved theatre.

There will be a time for Q&A after the meeting. For more information, click here and visit Susanville Performing Arts Center on Facebook (or Instagram).

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