By ROSIE GITHINJI
MT. VERNON — —
Seventy five years ago, the Granada Center for the Performing Arts opened in Mt. Vernon and on Sunday, there will be an open house to celebrate the momentous occasion.
David Lister, a board member for the Granada, said the theater was one of the most technologically advanced buildings of its time when it was first built.
“It was known as the ‘Crown Jewel of Southern Illinois’ when it was first built,” he said.
The non-profit center is funded through events and donations, having raised roughly $500,000 in money and in-kind services since members of Save the Granada took over the center in 2002 following its closing almost 10 years earlier.
Since then, renovations have included a new ticket booth, a new roof, rewiring and more. Plans were recently announced to expand to the building next door to open Marvel Lounge, named after Homer Marvel, the manager of the theater when it first opened. Plans call for a food and beverage preparation area and a seating area.
The open house will be held Sunday afternoon from 1 to 3 p.m., Lister said. There will be punch and cookies for visitors to the theater. There will also be power point presentations and other media about the Granada and its progress through the years, he said.
He said there are various shows being planned, which will be announced soon and the next installment of the Kids Classic Matinee Series will be held on Jan. 11, “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs.”
All of the movies are free and children must be accompanied by an adult. There will also be small concessions available and it will be $1 for everything.
All of the movies will begin at 2 p.m. Doors will open half an hour before each movie is scheduled to begin.
For more information on the Classic Kids Matinee, visit www.granada.mvn.net or call 618-740-0707.