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Good and bad news about the Holly Theater

What’s happening with the restoration of the Holly Theater? I toured it in January, and the hard-working volunteers hoped it have it up and running by year’s end. Now with COVID-19, it may be years before an 800-seat venue would be permitted to open. What’s the current state of the Holly and the outlook for ever reopening?

— Carole

We should first point out, Carole, that the 90-year-old Holly Theater has 1,020 seats.

We’ve also got some good news and bad news about the Holly.

COVID-19 has put a damper on the Holly progress, for sure.

According to Randy McKay, executive director of Jefferson Live!, loss of income from the Cascade Theatre in Redding, also run by Jefferson Live!, has forced cutting of overhead costs to help with fundraising efforts.

On a positive note, some donations have been received from local residents who have passed on their COVID stimulus checks to the Holly campaign.

Also, a federal tax credit deadline for completion has been extended to 2021 due to COVID.

Another plus is that the $10 million estimated price tag to finish the Holly is expected to drop when the project goes out to bid this fall.

But there is still a $3 million shortfall to get the project over the finish line.

McKay said an Americans for the Arts study has shown that the Holly Theater could be one of the strongest economic recovery tools and could generate $3.25 million of additional spending in the Rogue Valley economy every year it operates, while supporting 100 full-time jobs around the community and generating at least 10,000 new hotel guests each year.

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.