Theatre campaign sees 'good response'
by Anna Oakes
Five months into the quiet phase of a capital campaign to raise money for the Appalachian Theatre restoration, Campaign Chair John Cooper said things are going well.
"I am delighted to add that we have had good response in the early stages of the campaign," Cooper said.
Formed earlier this year to restore and operate the historic downtown venue, the nonprofit Appalachian Theatre of the High Country Inc. is currently seeking advance gifts that will determine the total fundraising goal for the campaign, Cooper said.
"(I) would expect to kick off the campaign to the public sometime in the summer of 2013," he said. "At that time, we will announce the final goal for the campaign and will invite the public to participate through a wide community appeal."
The town of Boone purchased the Appalachian Twin, a movie theatre on King Street built in 1938, in a foreclosure sale in late 2011 for $624,000. The town agreed to loan the money for the purchase to the Downtown Boone Development Association for three years.
Appalachian Theatre of the High Country will manage the theatre and raise the funds necessary for the building's restoration.
As of Nov. 15, supporters had paid the town $45,000 toward the theatre debt, Boone Cultural Resources Director Pilar Fotta said at a Boone Town Council meeting last month.
Proposed uses for the theatre range from music and theatrical productions to meetings and private parties.
Earlier this year, consultant Whitney Jones Inc. conducted a campaign survey of prospective donors. The consulting firm recommended moving ahead with a capital campaign after the survey produced positive results, and Appalachian Theatre leaders agreed to retain Whitney Jones' services for the duration of the campaign.
In addition to Cooper, members of the campaign cabinet include Bill Barbour, Bettie Bond, Hanes Boren, Sterling Carroll, Brian Crutchfield, Jim and Sheila Deal, Bartlett Dougherty, Mary Hall, Alfred Glover, Mary Hall, Keith Martin, Jerry Moretz, Nancy Reigel, Max Smith, Bobby Snead, Kay Stacy, Emily Stallings and Jay Vincent.
Honorary campaign cabinet members are Frank and Kay Borkowski, David Holt, Joe and Lynda Miller, Kenneth Peacock, Rosanne Peacock, Bonnie and Jamie Schaefer, Kenneth Wilcox and Jerry Wilcox.
The campaign website is http://www.savetheapptheatre.com.