Below: Lisa Winslow, executive director of the newly renamed Arts of the Albemarle, addresses a crowd of about 100 people during an event to kick off the planned restoration of the Chesson-Lowry building on Main Street in Elizabeth City Monday morning.
...Lisa Winslow, PAC's executive director, announced that the organization's new name from now on will be Arts of the Albemarle, to reflect the Pasquotank group's decision to expand its reach into Gates and Camden counties.
Also, the regional arts center will be called simply, The Center, and no longer the Lowry-Chesson building, Winslow
Banners containing both names were unveiled during Monday's ceremony.Winslow
expects The Center, which is being renovated by A.R. Chesson Construction Co.
, to be open by November 2008.
"This project is on the way.Finally it's a reality," she
Marc Basnight, D-Dare, were instrumental in obtaining a $500,000 state grant for the project, Winslow
said the new center will be well worth the wait.
"I know it's taken a lot of patience to get this far," she
Its revamped second floor will feature a state-of the-art theatre capable of seating up to 300 people, Winslow
said.The theater space will also be capable of hosting weddings, banquets and dinner theater, she
said.Other rooms in the facility will be used for Arts of the Albemarle's arts classes and can be rented for meetings.
To date, about $3.5 million in donations, pledges and anticipated tax credits have been raised for The Center project, Winslow
said.About $300,000 of that amount has been spent thus far, she
said naming rights are still available for theater seats for donations of $500 each, while naming rights for The Center can be had for $1 million.
Built in 1897 at the corner of Poindexter and Main streets, the three-story Lowry-Chesson building was used as a department store before closing several years ago.