MASSENA -- A $50,000 grant will aid the Massena Arts and Theatre Association in the purchase and redevelopment of the Old Massena Theatre.
Massena Arts and Theatre Association, Inc. (MATA) is a not-for-profit organization formed for the cultural purpose of fostering the arts and creating a year-round venue for performing arts and cultural events for the general public in the greater Massena area.
MATA is raising money to purchase the old Massena Theater and to restore the theatre to its previous position as the cultural and entertainment cornerstone of Massena. A $50,000 grant from the St. Lawrence River Valley Redevelopment allows MATA to move forward with its goal.
The entire cost of the theatre renovation is estimated to be between $750,000 and $950,000.
Phase one of the project requires $95,000 for the purchase of building.
Phase two is the facade renovation through the New York Main Street Grant Program. The theatre was built in 1930, and until around 1990, it played a key role in drawing people to the downtown area.
The theatre has remained dormant for almost twenty-five years, although it still retains much of its historical facade.
As an “anchor” building, the restoration of the theatre is crucially important to the revitalization of downtown from a visual, cultural and historical perspective. The theatre will function not only as a movie theater, but also as a venue that offers small theatrical productions, musical performances, and other cultural events. A vibrant theater will serve as a catalyst for the creation of new cafes, restaurants and shops in the downtown area.
This downtown revitalization will attract people from outside of the community to the town, bringing tourism money into the region and creating further demand for services.
Further, the theatre will add to the regional inventory of tourist activities. MATA, in collaboration with other regional theater companies such as CPS (SUNY Potsdam) and Ogdensburg Command Performance (OCP), hopes to create a “trail” of cultural and theatrical venues in the region.
Together, we will be able to offer a wider variety of performances and events, each suitable to a different style and sized venue, that will serve and entertain a broader group of people.
MATA was awarded $50,000 in grant funds to be used toward the purchase and redevelopment of the Old Massena Theatre.