Historic Granada Theater Restoration in Plainview, Texas
Historic Granada Theater Restoration in Plainview, Texas
Grandson of longtime partner spearheading restoration of 1929 movie palace - to feature current/classic films/live concerts.
Grandson of longtime partner spearheading restoration of 1929 movie palace - to feature current/classic films/live concerts. Read more
The Granada Theatre opened as a live performance and recognized “movie palace” in November of 1929...near the end of the vaudeville era...and the dawn of “talking” motion pictures. Hailed by many as the finest theater of its kind outside a major metropolitan city, for 48 years the theater played the top Hollywood films, hosted live performances including theatrical plays, magic acts, local contests and countless community events on its original stage. It amazed generations of “star-gazing” patrons, young and old. With its atmospheric design - featuring a domed ceiling, "twinkling" stars and moving clouds - which combined to give theater-goers a mesmerizing feeling of being outdoors. As one citizen observed, it was like being “in the garden of a Spanish nobleman’s castle.” With ornate walls that resembled stone...featuring actual flowing fountains, velvet-draped arches and ivy-laden grottoes back-lit to illuminate hand-painted murals which gave the illusion of depth and perspective - the Granada interior delivered a magical, almost mythical, experience. The theater provided the ideal vehicle for escape during the Depression years; an idyllic place for families to celebrate the best of Hollywood’s golden age into the post-war 1950s...with live appearances by TV and movie icons Hopalong Cassidy and Lash LaRue among the marquee attractions who made “in person” visits during this period. The Granada screen was modified - enlarged for CinemaScope - and the theater evolved through the 1960s and into the next decade, adapting its space to acomodate the latest Hollywood novelty, including the “sensurround” films of the 1970s such as “Earthquake”. My grandfather was a partner in the theater for much of the its greatest days...but after his retirement, the theater was sold in the fall of 1977 to an out-of-state corporation which drastically remodeled the theater into a sterile, virtually unrecognizable shadow of its former self. The once nearly 1,300-seat, single screen theater re-opened in late 1978 as a “twin”...devoid of its grand decor and Spanish castle elements. The classic features were removed, destroyed or covered over in that remodeling process. The theater operated in this fashion until it closed (ironically, on my birthday) on September 5th, 1997. Later stripped of its seating, screens and lying dormant for 15 years, the Granada was sold in the spring of 2012...but after the first buyer decided the distance from his home in south Texas was too far to accomodate his plan for restoration, I purchased the theater in early August after learning that it had been placed for sale on eBay. After this unusual turn of events, I know without a doubt that the time and conditions are right to embark on my lifelong dream of restoring the historic and iconic Granada to its original glory...to return this cultural treasure to its rightful place....and for it to be the centerpiece of a new period of revitalization in downtown Plainview, Texas. Recently my family and I made the journey to Kansas City, KS to study and photograph the Granada’s “big sister”, as I call it - the theater that the Plainview version was patterned after...using the same blueprints from the famed Boller Brothers’ architectural firm, in fact. Using these plans, pictures and historical information, I am 100% confident - and totally committed to - this major renovation project. My family is putting all available resources into this effort...the bulk of the financing available thanks to the successes of my previous business endeavors and an endorsement by my local bank - but that second phase of funding is largely dependent upon the success of this Kickstarter campaign - to prove that the project has the initial backing and support to get the restoration off the ground. We need help from the local and area citizens and supporters from across the country (and the world!) who are interested in HISTORIC PRESERVATION and the RESTORATION of this vintage "movie palace." Once restored, the theater will host a mix of current and classic films, live concerts, as well as cultural and community events....all in one magnificent, meticulously restored theater space. This is not only a FAMILY HERITAGE PROJECT but an effort to restore VITALITY and COMMUNITY PRIDE and INVOLVEMENT DOWNTOWN. Our aim is to bring back the magical, timeless appeal of the Granada...to truly make it GRAND once again. We greatly appreciate your taking the time to view this project and for helping us live this dream. Your support truly means the world to us and we hope the rewards program that we have established to acknowledge your contribution to this effort will appeal to you all. My sincere thanks! - Darryl Holland
Risks and challenges
We fully realize the challenges that lie before us in this renovation and restoration process...and my prior experience in remodeling two commercial warehouses and office spaces (one 24,000 sq. ft.; the other 40,000 sq. ft.) along with the ground up creation of our 1950s style malt shop (Holly Hop Ice Cream Shoppe in Lubbock, TX) have given me the training and insight into how to complete this theater restoration. I feel that I am uniquely qualified to spearhead this project thanks to my family connection to the theater; love for all things nostalgic and historical; and qualified financial backing once we get this initial round of "seed money" raised through this Kickstarter campaign.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (60 days)