Luster May Return To City Landmark
But probably not as a movie palace.
The theater has a prime location on lower Washington Street amid a cluster of restaurants less than a one-minute walk from the town’s waterfront and across the street from the Piano Factory mall.
Steve Loftis, owner of Snug Harbor in Grand Haven and Creative Advantages Inc., recently purchased the building with hopes of turning it into a new entertainment venue.
Loftis said he would like to develop the old theater into a 1,000-seat live music venue, similar to the State Theatre in Kalamazoo.
He said would also like to add a balcony and restore the Grand to its original luster.
“You could see, behind the old paint and curtains, a neat old building that potentially has years ahead of it,” said Loftis.
The theater has been empty since December 1999, but Loftis envisions a community theater that could host plays, concerts and corporate events.
He said the theater could reopen next fall or the following spring depending on fundraising.
Loftis is currently seeking $3 million to fund the project.
One thing’s sure: Any redevelopment will need to include a new sound system.
One of the reasons movie-goers stopped patronizing the old theater was that its sound system seemed firmly rooted in 1950s technology which, by the ‘90s, had seen better days.