Medford City Council approves $250k for Holly Theatre restoration

MEDFORD, Ore.– The Holly Theatre is getting a boost in fundraising from the City of Medford, with a $250,000 grant.

The restoration process has taken nearly a decade and the team behind it, hopes it will be open in 2024.

Restoring the Holly Theater is a passion project for Ken Silverman.

“People will come from far and wide to see what we bring here,” Silverman said.

He’s been involved with the project for the past nine years and he’s committed to preserving the history of the downtown Medford theater.

The light fixtures, the seats and even the carpet is made to match the original theatre that opened in 1930.

Silverman said, “the excitement that I look forward to is seeing people walking in here and being dazzled by this perfect reconstruction of a 1930’s theatre.”

The Medford City Council officially approved $250,000 to help with the restoration at Thursday’s city council meeting.

The money comes on top of $1 million in state funds that Governor Kate Brown approved back in 2016.

Silverman said they have even more big donations coming soon.

“We’re delighted that the city is interested in helping with this project that I think will be a terrific benefit for the city,” he said.

Silverman said they want to finish their current phase of construction by March.

He said the next phase will hopefully have the theatre ready to open by 2024.

“We still will have all the latest, greatest modern equipment. Sound, lighting, technology, we’ll have a screening, ability to run movies,” he said.

Silverman said more than 70% of the over 1,000 seats in the theatre have been sponsored.

He’s thankful for all of the support from the 3,000 donors who helped them get this far.

“When that stage is there and the curtain goes up, that’s when I’ll be breathing a sigh of relief and saying ‘we did it,'” he said.

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NBC5 News reporter Derek Strom is from Renton, Washington. He recently graduated from the Edward R. Murrow College of Communications at Washington State University with a degree in Broadcast News and a minor in Sports Management. He played in the drumline with the WSU marching band. These days, he plays the guitar and piano. Derek is a devoted fan of the Mariners, Seahawks, and Kraken.
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