Big, Positive Thought Amidst Epidemic Woes – Yes, we had to shut down the day after we opened March 14. Major league bummer! But what if we hadn’t nearly finished our fundraising and construction by March 14? If were midstream on either front, it might have been several years of delay before we could bring the project together for a successful conclusion. Luckily, instead we are poised and raring to go as soon as the quarantines are lifted and we are safe to congregate. Keep the faith; talk us up; and get ready some good times later this year.
Photo credit Bobby Tanzilo
Pre- Event Dining for Early Bird Patrons – Patrons gave The Norbert and Krimmer’s high fives all around for their excellent service and fare. Everyone who donated extra dollars to be a part of the early celebration had a great time and raved about the food and socializing opportunity. The local restaurant partnerships were so successful, we look forward to more opportunities in the future.
Bar Turns Out a Winner – Our grand opening crowd of about 130 had a grand and memorable night. The Chicken Wire Empire Band was a big hit and a perfect fit for a lively evening. So was our smashing Art Deco bar and lobby area. We sold mucho $$ of adult beverages, well above our earlier projections. The movement patterns in the three-level house allowed for easy passage to and from seats to rest rooms and to the bar. So comfortable were the concert goers that many stuck around to socialize after the concert was over. The musicians hung for a while, too, mixing with their followers.
Crisis Funding Helps – The theatre is applying for emergency funding from the SBA and several foundations for help with working capital to get us through the shutdown. Two foundations have already stepped up to fill our revenue/operating gap. Thanks to both.
Sold-out Concert Postponed – Chicken Wire Empire, which had sold out 330 seats for an March 28 concert, will be back as soon as allowed and a mutual date can be found. They enlarged their following at the Grand Opening after filling in on short notice. Can’t wait to get back those masters of contemporary bluegrass foot-tapping music. The dance floor in front of the stage saw many feet flying to their beat.
Congratulations to New Mayor Jenkins – Our new mayor. Chris Jenkins, understands and supports the arts. He is president of Musical Masquers, a long-time local theatre group.
Riverwalk Construction to Start – Renovation of the utilities on the west bank of the Milwaukee River starts this summer. The re-work of the section behind the theatre will be accomplished in 2021. It will provide a fabulous framework and great access for our venue. Thank the mayor and alderpersons for following through on their vision for making the river a sparkling asset for our downtown. Things are hopping in West Bend. There are, of course, a lot of design and engineering issue to be resolved with the city and the theatre.
Virtual tour of The Bend --: https://thebendwi.org/event/virtual-tour-of-the-bend/ (click on “buy tickets” to “attend”)
Historic West Bend Theatre
125 North Main Street
West Bend, WI 53095