ABC News Spotlights Alum's Efforts to Save Theatre

Crete's own Isis Theatre, owned by Thom Reeves '88, was featured this past week on ABC News in a story that told of the struggle small theatres are facing as they are forced to go digital. As the movie industry changes from 35 mm film to digital, it means that theatres must buy not only new projection equipment, but computers and a new sound system, as well. For small theatres this can be the end of their existence.

Thom says it will cost him $85,000 to make the conversion; $85,000 he doesn't have.  So he is reaching out to the Crete community for help.  Here is his plea for help on the Isis website:

To upgrade to digital, it will cost us $85,000, which is more than we can handle.   I have looked for ways to do this, and haven't found a solution.  I can come up with half the amount, but the other half is the hard part.   There is a grant I can apply that may be able to pay $20,000, with what I can afford; I'm still $27,000 short.  If 1000 people each donated $27, we could do it.   A lot of theatres are facing this dilemma, and a lot are closing.  We don't want to close.  We want to stay open.  I don't take a salary, and the theatre makes enough to keep going, but this change makes it impossible.  Approximately 1000 to 2000 theatres will close.  I don't want the Isis to be one of them.   I love Crete and the people - amazing and wonderful people.   Crete needs a theatre.   I had my hopes on a new marquee, but now, this is the primary priority to stay in the game.  Like George Bailey in "It's a Wonderful Life", we keep hoping for a miracle.   Movies are known for happy endings, and we hope to have one too."

The Isis Theatre is important to both the Crete and Doane College communities.  Local residents, Doane students and employees, and their families are able to attend first-run movies where the tickets and concessions are fairly priced and not have to drive 40 miles roundtrip in the process.  No small bags of popcorn at the Isis for $5.00 either.

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