This resolution was adopted by the Board of Directors of Huntingdon Landmarks, Inc. in February 2013, and kicked-off a 16-month long fundraising effort which officially concludes today.
The Historic Clifton Theatre was built in 1923 as a “Shrine of Silent Films.” Over the years as the movie industry has changed – first progressing from silent films to “talkies”, then to Dolby surround sound, to various incarnations of 3D projection – the Clifton Theatre has changed with it. The latest development in the movie industry presents a new challenge for small, community theaters like the Clifton. Movie makers are rapidly phasing out celluloid 35mm film in favor of digital format. This forces theaters all over the world that show Hollywood movies to change their projection equipment, or be forced to scramble for 35mm reels that are being destroyed more rapidly than they are being produced, and in the process be forced to show dated or foreign films, at an extremely high shipping cost.
Huntingdon Cinemas, Inc. currently owns and operates the Clifton Theatre as a five screen movie house showing first-run Hollywood films. Huntingdon Cinemas owns the Clifton Theatre building that contains three auditoriums, and rents space in an adjacent building to house the other two screens. The Clifton Theatre has been locally owned and operated throughout its history, and has been a tremendous community resource to the residents, visitors, schools, and community organizations in Huntingdon and surrounding counties.
As a small community in a very rural county, Huntingdon is not a market that is attractive to larger theater chains, therefore if the community were to lose its sole remaining movie house, the chances of another one opening to take its place are very slim. That is why we at Huntingdon Landmarks, Inc. believe that offering financial assistance to Huntingdon Cinemas, Inc. to make the necessary upgrades to their projection equipment is worthy of community support.
Huntingdon Cinemas, Inc. is doing its part to make this $269,878 project happen. They have identified opportunities for financing using local banks, state and local economic development loan funds, as well as cash investment combined that will add up to more than $250,000. Even with all that investment and debt, there is still a gap that needs to be filled to save our theater.
Huntingdon Landmarks, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) non-profit charitable corporation whose mission is to promote and facilitate the preservation and economic viability of historic landmarks in Huntingdon. Landmarks believes that helping Huntingdon Cinemas, Inc. close this funding gap to convert to digital projection equipment is wholly in line with its mission, and therefore has accepted the challenge to solicit community support for this project.
By making a tax-deductible, charitable contribution to Huntingdon Landmarks Inc., you can support this project, and in the process provide funding for future support of our mission. The primary goal of this fundraising effort is to purchase naming rights to the auditoriums within the Clifton Theatre or otherwise operated by Huntingdon Cinemas, Inc. Any funds raised over and above the purchase price and fundraising/donor recognition expenses, will be used by Huntingdon Landmarks, Inc. as a revolving loan fund for this or future projects that encourage the preservation and/or economic viability of historic landmarks in Huntingdon County.