News, Politics, and Culture from 14895

By Lacey Gardner

Poll Results: Make the Wellsville movie theater a “Multi-use entertainment venue”


Over 66% of nearly one thousand votes agree

Read some of the unique ideas for the former “Grand Theater”

By Andrew Harris

Public interest is peaked as the Village of Wellsville is about to take ownership of the property once know as the “Lin-Ray Twin,” and more recently, “The Grand Theater.”

The business closed after the ravages of Covid-19 and was placed on the Allegany County tax auction block. Just before that auction started today, the Village of Wellsville used a legal option to purchase the property from Allegany County and remove it from the public auction. The county legislature is set to approve that purchase on Wednesday March 22.

With the deed in hand, now what ? The village openly admits that this purchase was not for investment or business development, it was to protect the taxpayer and the Main Street business district.

We asked our readers for some input with the following options and the results are in:

The notion of a multi-use venue is a clear favorite amongst Sun readers and one of our readers provided an example of what is possible. The Penn Theater in Plymouth, Michigan has become a point of pride in that historic downtown. You can see by a quick visit to the site that they have converted into a community theater of sorts. Films are shown on a regular schedule that is supported by individual sponsors. The Texas Hot might sponsor a showing of “It’s a Wonderful Life” during the holidays for families. JT’s Gym may underwrite a showing of highlights from the high school sports season. Private groups may rent out theater space for business meetings or live stream a Buffalo Bills game. Check out the Penn Theater website.

Those who supplied custom answers to the question had some interesting, and amusing ideas. The dominant idea provided by write-in votes was “To keep this a movie theater,” others :

“Allow the old Theater to still be used as a stage for performances.”

“Keep it a movie theatre. Restore the inside nobody likes driving clear to Olean”

“a place for teens to hang out”

“The village doesn’t need to purchase this building. Waste of resources”

“Sell to private sector and let the free market determine its future”

“Family arcade and indoor mini golf”

“Museum /tourist attraction featuring Gabby Hayes”

“Drive thru for Texas Hot”

“Model it after the Palme House in Cuba.”

“Hold Classes on the Negative Effect Government Intervention has on Innovation”

“Comedy Club/Cannabis dispensary”

“Put in a KFC since they won’t do it with Taco Bell”

“Convert it into a shelter for the homeless and a kennel, solve two problems at once”

This is sure to be a big story for 2023 and we wil keep providing details as they develop.

Thanks to Hart’s Jewelry of downtown Wellsville for sponsoring our regular poll questions. While Hart’s maybe the areas predominant jeweler, they offer much more: Great gift ideas fill the store and Hart’s also offers the only local jewelry cleaning services. Watch stopped ? Did you know Hart’s does watch repair ?? Check out the new website for more about what is in the jewelry case, and what other services Hart’s offers.

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