Here is our News release about this exciting development at ACT!
The Academy of Children’s Theatre announced at its annual fundraising luncheon the naming of our theatre expansion project as the Windermere Children’s Theatre. The Tri Cities real estate company has stepped up to provide $350,000 in a pledge of financial support for completing the construction for the new theatre. The 300-seat Windermere Children’s Theatre is set to open for the fall 2020 production by ACT. The theatre will be located at the rear of the existing ACT facility on Wellsian Way in Richland. It will be available for community use in addition to ACT productions.
Jeff Thompson, the managing partner of the local Windermere office, noted in his remarks that the support is being made as a partnership initiative for the real estate firm and ACT. To launch the initiative, the opening night on September 28th of ACT’s upcoming production of “Wizard of Oz” is being designated as Windermere night. Ushers will be Windermere agents, and clients of Windermere are being offered complimentary tickets to the show.
ACT also announced another significant corporate gift for the new theatre from the Simon Mall. The theatre will feature top quality theatre seats from the recently closed Regal Theatre complex. The chairs became the property of Simon Mall when the theatre complex closed, and in an effort to recycle the nearly new chairs, Simon general manager Barbara Johnson contacted ACT to facilitate the donation. ACT estimates the value of the 400 chairs at over $150,000. The chairs will be located in both the Windermere Children’s Theatre and in the ACT Black Box theatre space. In another generous example of corporate support for the new theatre, the chairs are being stored at a Lampson facility until they are ready to be installed.
The organization name will continue to be the Academy of Children’s Theatre, and the WIndermere Children’s Theatre will be a facility located on site at ACT’s venue.
ACT Board member Cathy Kelly who leads the theatre expansion project team stated, “ACT is incredibly grateful for the fantastic community support we have received for this important project. We have been working towards this goal of an in-house theatre since we were founded over 20 years ago. This tremendous gift from Windermere, complemented by Simon’s incredible donation of chairs, have ensured that our project will be providing a wonderful new asset to our community.”