- Associated Press - Tuesday, September 29, 2015

OXFORD, Neb. (AP) - Cup holders and cushy seats are among the new features at the community-run Granada Theater in Oxford.

The theater is operated by volunteers and funded largely by donations from the 780 people who live in the south-central Nebraska town and rural residents. The old theater that opened in 1918 was torn down in 1992 and replaced on the site by the new Granada Theater.

The theater board bought the seats from a closed theater in Des Moines, Iowa, for $3,500. They were installed earlier this month by volunteers including students from Southern Valley Public Schools’ trade and industry class, according to the Kearney Hub (https://bit.ly/1LZbOY1 ).

The floor of the theater was repainted and repaired before the new seats were installed. Because the new seats are larger, the theater capacity was cut to 120 from 152, but the reconfiguration has created more room for wheelchair access.

Three years ago the theater’s projection equipment was upgraded to play digital and 3-D movies. This summer the main auditorium’s air-conditioning unit was replaced. Still on the board of directors’ wish list for the theater is LED floor lighting.

Many Nebraska communities have sought advice from the Granada board of directors about saving old theaters or opening new ones, said board member Kathy Fox.

“It’s very hard for these communities to keep their theaters open. There’s not enough profit there to do much with,” she said. “We’re very proud of the Granada Theater. It’s been referred to as a jewel of the community.”


Information from: Kearney Hub, https://www.kearneyhub.com/

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