Antioch is a wonderful northern Illinois community near the Wisconsin border, with its historic business district serving as the downtown for many surrounding communities. Developed in the early 1900’s, it has a traditional, tree-lined "main street" but with schools, churches, and homes all within easy walking distance. In the early 1900s, Antioch was a popular vacation spot for many Chicagoans. The Antioch Theatre, located in the heart of downtown, has served as a critical heartbeat for the downtown for nearly 100 years, and losing the theatre will be a devastating loss to this tight knit community. Its rejuvenation is critical to the health of this charming downtown.
Donations for Digital
All new films require digital equipment, and in order to not only salvage the theatre, but to renovate, reopen, and expand for long-term financial viability, a local property owner has committed significant funds and assembled the financial support of the local business community to put forth a $750,000 redevelopment plan to acquire and repair/renovate the building. To date, $650,000 has been committed with an additional $35,000 to be raised through sidewalk star sales and other promotions. We are asking our Kickstarter supporters to help raise $65,000 to purchase the digital projection equipment for the main screen.
Antioch Theatre: Past, Present and Future
The Antioch Theatre first opened in ~1919 as a live performance theatre called the Majestic Theatre. In 1924 it converted to a single-screen movie theatre, changed its name to the Antioch Theatre, and has shown affordable, family-friendly movies ever since. In May 2014, maintenance problems, ownership struggles, and the mandatory conversion to digital projection drove the current owner to close the theatre;
New ownership will renovate and expand the theatre to position it for long-term financial stability. It will include:
Additional 29-seat boutique theatre
All new digital projection and sound (Go Kickstarter!)
New screens, drapery, and seating
New classic marquee
Sprinkler fire protection
...But the rare, beloved balcony will remain historic!
With your support through Kickstarter, new digital projection will provide outstanding quality allowing the theatre to continue to show first-run releases. It will also permit the theatre to broadcast live and special events such as ballet, opera, sporting events, and gaming competitions. Since the Antioch Theatre was originally a performance theatre, its modest stage will remain and the theatre can host speakers, comedy shows, small musical performances, and community events.
The additional screen is critical for successful operation in the future. Movie distributors require theatres to hold films for 2-4 weeks. However, as a movie’s attendance drops during its run, a single screen theatre is burdened with little income while it waits for the next new release. With a new second screen, the revitalized Antioch Theatre would be able to transfer a movie onto the smaller screen in the latter weeks of its run and show a new release in the original, larger theatre.
Funding…and the remaining gap
The investor has committed $300,000, and Corporate Sponsors (Raymond Chevrolet, Something Sweet Confectionery, Great Lakes Credit Union, the Antioch Chamber of Commerce, and an anonymous benefactor, have pledged sponsorships totaling $150,000. The Village of Antioch will lend the project $200,000, repaid by a Village-wide movie ticket tax, and the development team plans to raise $35,000 selling granite sidewalk stars and other personalized promotions. Despite these community-wide efforts, the project still needs $65,000 to purchase the new digital equipment for the main screen. This is where we need your help! Through Kickstarter and our donation offerings, we hope to finalize fundraising and start the redevelopment.
How Kickstarter Works
Kickstarter is a fundraising website for creative projects. Kickstarter's all-or-nothing fundraising policy eliminates any risk of losing money that is pledged by all of you wonderful contributors! If you choose to BE A STAR and make a pledge to help save the Historic Antioch Theatre, your donation will only be received by the development team if we meet or exceed our funding goal by the deadline that we have set. If our funding goal is not met, the amount you choose to pledge will never be charged to your credit card.
About Our Rewards
We have two reward opportunities that will be displayed in Antioch Theatre once renovations are complete. The Interior Engraved Glass Wall Stars will hang on the wall leading up to the historic balcony. The Seat Sponsorship Plaques will be on seats in both the original theatre and the new boutique theatre. All other rewards will be shipped to the address you provide.
Risks and challenges
.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (45 days)