- Associated Press - Tuesday, May 12, 2015

CENTRAL CITY, Neb. (AP) - Residents who want to watch a movie in Central City could have two cinemas to pick from, with one group working to revive a former theater and another planning to build a new one.

The Merrick County Entertainment Corp. already has raised more than half of its $1 million goal to help fund construction of a two-screen theater in the town of around 3,000 people, The Grand Island Independent (https://bit.ly/1Iyuobg ) reported.

Member Dave Dickinson said he and others had hoped the next owner of the State Theater, which closed in 2013, would get involved in the project. But when it became clear that no one would buy the place, Dickinson said the Merrick County Entertainment Corp. formed in 2014.

“(We’re) just trying to make our community a better place,” Dickinson said. “And I feel like a movie theater is a cornerstone of that.”

The group has been working with a movie theater consulting company in Kansas on its plans, which call for it being running by volunteers with a paid manager to train and supervise them.

Another group, the State Theater Foundation, has recently come forward with a plan to reopen the old theater.

Although Dickinson said he would love to see both groups collaborate, he said he hopes a new use is found for the former theater. He said the group would love to see the new theater open by the end of the year.

“As soon as we can raise the money, we’re breaking ground,” he said.


Information from: The Grand Island Independent, https://www.theindependent.com

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