Massac Theatre gets long awaited cleaning

METROPOLIS, IL (KFVS) - For years the Massac Theatre in Metropolis, Illinois has needed a face lift. On Saturday, April 1, a big step was made toward that goal. 

Dozens of volunteers came out to the theatre, built in 1938, to remove items that were in disrepair. 

This was made possible because of a community gr ant from Thrivent Financial Services to form this action team to help clean up the building. 

Seats, glass and other items were gutted from the building and thrown away. 

"Once upon a time this old theatre was turned into a radio station," Volunteer Mike Hausman said. "The balcony was rebuilt into the offices and stuff for the radio station. So that has to all come out and get back to the basic bones of the original balcony to piece it back together into a useable theatre."

The project itself called Save the Massac Theatre has been going on for over 10 years now. In recent months, the building has turned over ownership now with the people that have led the project. 

"That's been part of their goal to raise money to pay for buying the building," Hausman said. "Now that that has happened, it opens the door for future progress for the building."

Hausman feels this is a big step being able to get a crew in there to clean out some items. 

"For years the building has set here with basically no activity," Hausman added. "Here today we had 25, 30 volunteers come up here willing to work. Anxious to work really. So you know there is an interest community wise to renovate the building."

While working, Hausman reminisced on his youth when the theatre was operating. 

""People my age remember going here as a child and picking out the lucky seat on Saturday so you can win a box of candy or they have a drawing every Saturday to see how much the movie would cost next week which might be a dime or a quarter."

Many hope to see this theatre come to life soon to bring yet another option for people to see a movie or event here in the Downtown part of Metropolis, Il. 

""It can be an area for showing movies. It can be a place for high schools to have plays and music concerts," Hausman said. 

As it sits now, holes remain in some parts of the upstairs balcony floor. Repairing those along with the upstairs balcony walls and another brick wall is a few of the things on there list to do next.

Download the KFVS News app: iPhone | Android

Copyright 2017 KFVS. All rights reserved.