Bonnie Kate Theater renovation progressing ever further

Published 8:14 am Thursday, December 6, 2018

After almost two months of closing down for repairs, Elizabethton’s local theater is preparing to reopen its doors, as the overall renovations continue to push ahead.

The Bonnie Kate Theater has been working on renovations for a while but had to close down about a month and a half ago due to a collapsed roof.

John Huber, a board member of the theater, said progress on restoring the theater has been progressing steadily.

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“We completed the roof just recently,” Huber said. “We plan to reopen to show movies within the next two weeks.”

He said he had hoped the theater would be able to continue to show movies and performances during the winter downtime, but the collapsed ductwork forced them to close everything down until they had everything repaired.

“We met with the fire marshal, and we are working on their concerns,” he said.

Now that the roof is complete, Huber says they are working on the new sprinkler system.

“We are working on a blue-line plan for the sprinklers, as well as a floor plan for the upstairs,” Huber said.

Among the plans to renovate and repair existing architecture, Huber says the theater also plans to improve and add many new features. One of those improvements is the theater stage itself, currently 15 feet long.

“That is not enough for what we need,” Huber said. “Expanding it lets us have more types of live programs and venues.”

As for when the renovations themselves will be complete, Huber said there is a “figment of an ETA” that says the renovations will be complete in about two years.

“We move forward an inch at a time, two if we are lucky,” he said.

The theater relies on donations from the community and grants from the city government to finance both the general operations of the theater and the renovations, raising money through various local events throughout the year.

Huber said those interested in donating can pick up a pledge form from the Bonnie Kate Theater itself, at 115 S. Sycamore St.

“We push on [the renovations] every day,” Huber said. “Elizabethton has been very supportive of our efforts.”