Revitalization

Deer Lodge, Montana's Rialto Theater Rises from the Ashes

Posted on: May 17th, 2013 by David Robert Weible 3 Comments

 

Historic Photo of the Rialto Theater in Deer Lodge, Mont., c. 1942. Credit: Rialto Community Theater, Inc.Ccollection
The Rialto Theater in Deer Lodge, Mont., c. 1942

It’s often said that small towns enjoy an enhanced sense of community; they are places where neighbors work together, help one another, and pitch in for the common good. Nowhere does that seem to be truer than in Deer Lodge, a tiny town of 3,400 located an hour and a half southeast of Missoula, in western Montana.

Since 1921, Deer Lodge's Rialto Theater has sat at the heart of the town, and as the only auditorium in the area, hosted events from rotary talent shows to weekend movies. In 1995, with the National Register-listed theater deteriorating and its ownership no longer able to maintain it, members of the community banded together to form Rialto Community Theater, Inc., a nonprofit that would run the theater and lead a restoration project.

By 2006, the organization had poured more than $100,000 into upgrading the theater. Then, disaster struck.

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The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

David Robert Weible

David Robert Weible

David Robert Weible is an assistant editor at Preservation magazine. He came to DC from Cleveland, Ohio, where he wrote for Sailing World and Outside magazines.

 

By Linda Feagler, senior editor of Ohio Magazine

Ohio Auditorium restored. Credit: PlayhouseSquare Archives
Ohio Auditorium restored

Critics called him crazy.

Even well-wishers who offered Ray Shepardson sincere support couldn’t believe the school administrator’s crusade to preserve four historic theaters in Cleveland, Ohio, could possibly succeed.

But it did -- and then some.

Today, Shepardson’s once improbable effort is Cleveland’s crown jewel: His rescue not only initiated the world’s largest theater restoration project (totaling some $100 million), it transformed that quartet of crumbling venues into a revitalized PlayhouseSquare, one of the largest performing-arts complexes in the country (second only to New York’s Lincoln Center).... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Guest Writer

Although we're always on the lookout for blog content, we encourage readers to submit story ideas or let us know if you've seen something that might be interesting and engaging for a national audience. Email us at editorial@savingplaces.org.

Announcing the Great American Main Street Award Winners for 2013

Posted on: April 14th, 2013 by National Trust for Historic Preservation

 

Written by Erica Stewart, Public Affairs Manager

Ocean Springs, Mississippi, and Rochester, Michigan celebrate their Main Streets. Credits: Ben Muldrow; Steve Kovacs
Ocean Springs, Miss. (l.) and Rochester, Mich. (r.) celebrate their Main Streets.

We all know a great Main Street when we see it. Maybe it offers abundant antique shops and a second-hand bookstore or two. Perhaps it is awash in art galleries and trendy restaurants, or overflowing with edgy coffee shops and funky clothing stores. In fact, it might offer all of these things -- plus shady trees, easily navigable streets, jazzy festivals, and eclectic historic storefronts.

But what isn’t as evident beyond those inviting streetscapes is the Main Street organization that in many cases made it possible. Neither the casual tourist nor the regular shopper probably knows much about the work of the Main Street organization’s staff and loyal volunteers, its board of directors, and its coordinating program at the city, county or state level.... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

National Trust for Historic Preservation

National Trust for Historic Preservation

The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded non-profit organization, works to save America's historic places.

[Slideshow] Historic DC Church Gets a Mural Makeover

Posted on: April 12th, 2013 by Emily Potter 6 Comments

 

Alex Brewer, better known as HENSE, is an Atlanta, Ga.-based graffiti artist who took to Washington, D.C.’s city streets last year for a private commission to transform an abandoned, historic church into a work of art.

blog_photo_HENSE_studio
HENSE in his studio.

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The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Emily Potter

Emily Potter is a copywriter at the National Trust. She enjoys writing about places of all kinds, the stories that make them special, and the people who love them enough to save them.

[Slideshow] A Makeover for the Mayo Building

Posted on: March 27th, 2013 by Gwendolyn Purdom

 

A majestic relic of turn-of-the-20th century Tulsa, Okla., the Mayo Building, erected by two of the state’s founders, Cass and John Mayo, is the last remaining building in the city’s original “skyscraper district.” But as recently as 2005, the structure was abandoned and derelict.

Enter developer Wiggin Properties, LLC and architects Kinslow, Keith & Todd, who transformed the forgotten property into a mixed use residential and commercial building, earning the $30 million project the 2012 National Housing & Rehabilitation Association’s Best Historic Rehab Utilizing New Market Tax Credits award, among other recognition. There’s now even a permanent display in the structure’s public spaces that tells the Mayo Building’s unlikely story.

Take a look at our slideshow to find out more about this inspiring makeover.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.