From the community

Pittsfield Community Theatre Fundraiser Oct. 20 featuring Tim Sample

Posted Oct. 18, 2013, at 10:58 p.m.
Last modified Oct. 19, 2013, at 5:38 a.m.
Tim Sample
Tim Sample

Please support the Pittsfield Community Theatre Sunday night, October 20, by purchasing tickets for Tim Sample’s performance scheduled for 6:30 pm at the Pittsfield Community Theatre located at 137 Main Street, Pittsfield. Doors open at 6:00 pm. Tickets at the door are $18.00 each. The event is sponsored by the Sebasticook Valley Federal Credit Union with all proceeds going toward the Theatre Revitalization Project and specifically to pay for the new digital projector. The Theatre has $4,400 left to raise to pay off the digital projector that needed to be installed in order to keep showing movies and remain open.

Tim Sample is widely acknowledged to be New England’s premier native humorist.

The Town of Pittsfield commends Sebasticook Valley Federal Credit Union (SVFCU) for its generous sponsorship of Tim Sample’s performance. SVFCU’s mission is to support the local community with valuable services, in a friendly atmosphere, with caring employees who are committed to upholding the credit union philosophy. SVFCU’s efforts to better the lives of members includes initiatives such as the 0% Fuel Loan and its support of the local community. One of the major ways SVFCU supports the local community is through the Ending Hunger in Maine Campaign. SVFCU, with the help of its very generous members and hard working dedicated employees, raises money all year long for this very worthwhile cause. Since 1990 the SVFCU Ending Hunger Campaign has raised over $100,000. All of these funds have been distributed to programs (such as food pantries, farm share programs for the elderly and snack pack programs for school children) in the Sebasticook Valley area to help those who are in danger of going hungry. Today Sebasticook Valley Federal Credit Union proudly provides the financial needs of over 10,000 members of the Sebasticook Valley as it celebrates its 60th year of operation. Branch Offices are located in Pittsfield and Newport.

The Pittsfield Community Theatre Revitalization Campaign is in progress. On April 5, 2013, the Theatre was fully converted to digital films. We were very fortunate to be able to do this due to the cost of the conversion. The Town was able to convert to digital due to the hard work and dedication of the Theatre Fundraising Group headed by Dena Hall over the last several years to raise over $52,000 toward this project. Dena was joined on the fundraising team by Kelli Frost, Susie Furrow, Lori Glidden, Terri Hall, Jason Judd and Nicole Steeves. Hundreds of donations were made while hundreds of citizens from the community supported the group’s efforts to fundraise to upgrade the Theatre. The group continues to fundraise to pay for the cost of the digital projector.

The Pittsfield Community Theatre is a wonderful asset for the region and certainly a unique community service. The Theatre first opened with silent movies in 1915. Talking movies were installed in 1929. In 1956, J.R. Cianchette purchased the theatre and closed it for remodeling, spending between $80,000 – $100,000 on items such as the State’s first cushioned swing back seats and carbon rod projectors. In April of 1957, the completely renovated and modernized Bijou Theatre reopened. It was one of the most modern and beautiful small town theatres in New England. Mr. Wheaton purchased the Bijou in 1962 and operated it until 1975. In 1977, the Town of Pittsfield bought the Theatre for $24,000. Mr. Wheaton served as Operations Manager for the Town until December 28, 1978. The Pittsfield Community Theatre Projector Room was dedicated to Glen H. Wheaton on May 23, 2013. This dedication honored Mr. Wheaton for his many years of service to the community through his commitment and love of the Theatre. He was respected for his theatre operations and commitment to the community and region for showing quality movies.

Over the last 37 years, hundreds of thousands of children have attended the Pittsfield Community Theatre. It has been a great opportunity to see movies at a low price and an experience that children remember all of their lives – going to the theatre for the first time on your own or seeing your first scary movie.

At this time, the Pittsfield Community Theatre is the only municipally owned and operated theater in the State of Maine. It remains one of very few town owned facilities across the nation. Today, the theatre shows first-run and second-run movies while retaining a small-town flavor in both operation and attitude. Drop by the Theatre to take “a walk down memory lane” and see the displays of some of the highlights of Pittsfield’s favorite shows. We invite everyone to come experience our little treasure on Main Street on Sunday, October 20 to enjoy a great performance by Tim Sample.

For more information, please contact Kathryn Ruth, Town Manager at 487-3136 or Donna Dunphy, Theatre Manager at 487-5461.

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