Posted: Fri, August 31 2012 at 5:49 PM, Updated: Fri, August 31 2012 at 6:30 PM
The Craterian Ginger Rogers Theater in downtown Medford is changing it's name, after a large donation from a local patron.
Say goodbye to that big 'G' and Ginger Rogers marquee outside the Craterian. It will now be known as the Craterian Theater at the Collier Center for the Performing Arts.
James Collier, a local philanthropist, made a donation large enough to prompt a name change at the Craterian.
"It's one of the largest gifts made in our community that we're aware of," executive director Stephen McCandless tells us.
The amount is undisclosed, but we do know it's more than 200,000 dollars. We're also told, despite the bad economy, the money wasn't a factor in the decision.
"This money will help guard our future and create opportunities for us, but in terms of our operating budget it won't effect it," continues McCandless.
Now the Craterian Ginger Rogers Theater will be
called the Craterian Theater at the Collier Center for the Performing Arts.
"We don't have any hard costs on how much it will cost to change the marquee," says McCandless.
Not everyone is happy about the new name.
"I think it should remain the Ginger Rogers theater," says Medford Resident Alisa Cloud. "Just cause someone donates a large sum to the theater doesn't mean it should be changed."
Even the executive director admits it may be an adjustment for residents."I imagine it will take time," McCandless says.
Donor James Collier - whose name also graces the Camelot Theater in Talent -is heading out of town, but we caught up with him on the phone to ask him his opinion on changing Ginger's title to his.
"I think she's been there quite a while, since she danced on the stage in 1928 and never gave them a dime," remarks Collier. "I'm not so focused on the fact she never gave them money, she gave them her name which was probably better. "
Turns out, the dancing star's estate only gave the Craterian rights to her name in 1997, after restorations. However, her title will not be completely stripped.
"We still love Ginger so we've honored the stage in her name," McCandless says.
So as one curtain goes down on the Ginger Rogers, another goes up on the Collier Center.
Craterian still remains in the business title, which officials say will help with re-branding costs.