Thursday, September 23, 2010

Capitol Cinema

Earlier this week the magnificent Capitol Theater in downtown Olympia was sold to its longtime tenant, the Olympia Film Society. The volunteer-run non-profit film society, which operates on a shoe string budget to say the least, had been renting the 1920's-era movie palace since 1986.

The theater's owner had been trying to sell the place along with the retail building surrounding it, but after negotiating for months, and lowering the price repeatedly, he finally decided to sell just the cinema to OFS for $300,000. Call it one one more recession-era success story.

Despite boasting a terrific staff, having a well curated year-round calendar, and being Olympia's only alternative or art house cinema, being a tenant in the building had seriously limited the film society’s opportunities to raise funds as grant agencies were reluctant to give upkeep money to a group that didn’t own its space. Now that they own the place the money should come pouring in. And their biggest annual event, the 27th Olympia Film Festival, which is always a great party, will be better than ever. The Festival runs from November 12th through the 20th.

Thanks to iphone-alot for the photo!

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