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Can volunteers help rebuild the Holly?

I, like many others, am a Holly Theatre donor. So I always follow the status updates with great interest. I know the cost issue is huge for completing the renovation. But what I am curious about is this: Is it feasible to use volunteers to complete some of the renovation work? Look at Habitat for Humanity. They use volunteers to totally build houses. Couldn’t some portion of the needed work be done by local, skilled volunteers, e.g. retired tradesmen? Do you think this is feasible?

— Bill F.

Your heart certainly is in the right place, Bill, but for volunteers to do actual work on a fairly complicated commercial structure like the Holly is a tough one.

The Holly has actually increased the number of volunteers by 15% over the past few months. They help out with the volunteer newsletter, mailings and other efforts. Volunteers will be used when the Holly is open for live entertainment such as in the box office.

But there are a number of issues that would make it difficult for volunteers to strap on their tool belts and start hammering, sawing or climbing around on scaffolding.

If you’ve been on a tour of the Holly, you know there are some potentially hazardous work environments throughout the auditorium, which is particularly cavernous. Standing on a catwalk above the ceiling would give most of us vertigo.

Paul Christy, executive director of Jefferson Live!, suggests you reach out to him at info@jeffersonlive.org to sign up as a volunteer.

He said there would be insurance issues, potential legal problems and a required adherence to the Fair Standards Labor Act because of state grants that have been received.

“You get into some really tough areas,” Christy said.

Send questions to “Since You Asked,” Mail Tribune Newsroom, P.O. Box 1108, Medford, OR 97501; or by email to youasked@rosebudmedia.com. We’re sorry, but the volume of questions received prevents us from answering all of them.