After 30 years of searching our wandering theater has found a permanent home! The long walk through the “desert of eternal rent payments” has finally ended. SCT has purchased (as in bought) a 5800 sq. ft. space located at 4802 W. Emerald in Boise.
This space is located on the east end of the strip mall on the northeast corner of Emerald and Orchard (formerly Dino’s Bar & Night Club).
This space is nearly ready-made for our theater. It has bathrooms, a stage area, a sound/light booth, an area for a lobby (complete with bar), a box office, sound deadening material and acoustic tiles, and an ambiance that just feels right. Bonus features include a very visible location, with a huge sign on the street and plenty of parking. This space is almost identical in size to our old location (but a more useable configuration) and our mortgage payments will be no more than what we were paying for rent at the Hillcrest.
It is only through an amazing series of serendipitous events that we find ourselves at this historic moment. These include: a Board with an unwavering optimism and drive to find the best possible location; a scorched earth search, which included many of you, and a lengthy process of consideration of many locations; the discovery of this new location by one of our own; the vision and foresight of our expert theater builders to see the potential of this space; a negotiation team who fought for and achieved a deal that was fiscally responsible and within our means; sellers (the Ed Bews family) willing to carry the financing (since it is impossible for a poor, non-profit theater to borrow money from a bank); sellers willing to come out of their own pockets to make the deal happen (they have to pay the brokers more than they will receive in down payment); and extremely favorable mortgage terms that will not increase our operating expenses.
There are, however, some practical realities that must be met in the short term (and I mean really short term). We need to close the purchase no later than April 22 (just 22 days away) in order to take possession before our free storage at the Lithia building runs out. But in order to close we need to raise the down payment and closing costs. In order to make the space into a theater we need to raise build out funds (we hope to have the theater ready to open as soon as possible, perhaps even this season). Thanks to our patron donations to our Building Fund and thanks to recent dedicated donations from others to purchase this building we only need to raise another $15,000. Now I say “only” because, for a mere $15,000, SCT will never again need to fear the previously, ever-dreaded eviction notice. For a mere $15,000, SCT can feel comfortable that the improvements we make to our new home will not be taken from us by some faceless landlord. A mere $15,000 will give us the peace of mind that everything we do for the next 30 years will be for the theater, not for someone else. The purchase of this building assures us that we will have a permanent foundation upon which to build our future.
What does this mean to you, our readers and ever faithful patrons? It means that we need each of you to dig down as deep as you possibly can to help us fund the down payment, closing costs and build out costs. It means that we need you to reach out to every friend, relative, co-worker and stranger and ask them to donate. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for our theater. Unless we can raise $15,000 in the next three weeks, we will lose it and that could mean the end of our theater as we know it.
Are you digging? Are you calling, e-mailing, blogging, tweeting, yelling at the top of your voice? If so, here are the nuts and bolts. Please make all checks out to SCT Building Fund. Send it to P.O. Box 6523, Boise, ID 83707. You can also donate by credit card (Master Card or Visa) by calling 342-2000 and leaving a message. We will return the call to seal the deal. For every $100 you donate you get your name on a theater seat. For $1000 you get your name on the building dedication plaque and your name on a theater seat. For a mere $10,000 we will name the theater after you or your family (i.e. Stage Coach presents [insert name of play here] at the Smith Theater). Your donations will be tax deductible because Stage Coach is a 501c(3) corporation.
This is the time for action, folks. Give now, give hard and give a lot!!
Jeff Thomson, president