Mt. Vernon Register-News


December 17, 2013

Granada celebrates 76 years

MT. VERNON — The Granada Center for the Performing Arts celebrated the 76th anniversary Monday.

Residents were invited to a reception with hors d’oeuvres and music. The guests enjoyed Christmas music performed by members of the Cedarhurst Choral Project.

The Granda first opened the doors on Dec. 16 1937. The theater was built by Homer Marvel.

Linda Williams, board member and granddaughter of Marvel, was excited about the celebration.

“This is a very important night for me,” Williams said.

Williams reminisced on the events that took place 76 years ago and how her grandfather must have felt at the grand opening.

“I’m sure he was strutting his stuff on this night,” said Williams.

Williams still has photos and the telegrams that was sent to her grandfather wishing him luck on opening night. She said that back in those days stars of the movies that were being shown would send out telegrams to theaters.

The film that was shown opening night was True Confessions staring Carole Lombard, Fred MacMurray and John Barrymore.

As the evening’s events continued the Granda announced their new fundraiser called Capital Campaign. This fundraiser will help the theater with future projects. Tiles may be purchased by the public, and have their name or a message engraved into it. The titles will be featured outdoors once the sidewalk renovations begin.

The funds raised will go toward restoring the auditorium.

Barb Hengle, president of the board of directors, said a lot of progress has already been made and everything here is a labor of love.

“The theater itself was very elegant and we are hoping to get some of the beauty back as it was,” Hengle said.

For additional information on how to help with the Capital Campaign call 740-0707 or visit

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