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New Strand owners seek community involvement

By Caroline Klapper | Apr 18, 2012

Waynesville's historical Strand Theater has another lease on life as its new owners Rodney and Lorraine Conard and Jimmy Buchanan work on renovating the space to house their bar code scanner refurbishment business, Broken Media LLC.

While space will be made for offices and a warehouse, the owners want to preserve the theater portion of the building, which has been around since the 1940s.

"It has such a wonderful history." Lorraine said of the building.

In an effort to preserve and restore the theater, the Conards and Buchanan are inviting the community to get involved. The idea is to work with people who want to restore the theater and support a performance venue in Waynesville, and in return, the theater will be open for use as a community-run space.

"Basically, we want it to be a space that's available for the community to develop. We want to give it back to the community," Lorraine said.

Meetings to establish a Community Guidance Team will take place at 10 a.m. today and at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, April 18 at Main Street Perks, a few doors down from The Strand. Anyone with an interest in getting involved in the theater's revitalization is invited to attend.

For more information, visit 38main.com or call 548-0797. The Strand is also on Facebook at The Strand at 38 Main. There, people can take a survey about what kinds of things they would like to see going on at the theater, such as musical performances, speakers, classic film showings or open mic nights.

Coming up in May is a fundraiser for the refurbishment of the theater. It will be 4 p.m. Sunday, May 6 at the New Headwaters Brewing Company taproom in Waynesville.

Admission is $20 and includes a Headwaters brew paired with a specially made chocolate from Chocolate MD. Music will be provided from 5 to 6 p.m. by Red June, an Asheville-based acoustic trio.

Tickets can be purchased at 38main.com or by calling 548-0797.

The Mountaineer 4/18/2012

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