Hyart seeks board members

The Hyart Redevelopment Corp. announced this week that it is seeking a pair of new board members to help the current board move forward on a variety of projects.

“We wanted to open it up to the community,” board president Mike Steenbakkers said. “Anybody interested can reply in writing to Hyart Theatre, P.O. Box 333 in Lovell, by December 15.”

The new members would replace Jennifer Martinez D’Alessandro and EmRee Pugmire, both of whom moved out of the community a few years ago. Current board members are Steenbakkers, Jennifer Schneider, Kathy Brown, Jack Brinkerhoff and Todd Wilder.

Jessica Carr is the theater manager.

Carr and Steenbakkers said the Hyart board is continuing to raise money for needed projects at the theater, including upgrading restrooms, refurbishing the marquee, upgrading the sound system and – the biggest project – a needed conversion to full digital projection, estimated to cost from $50,000 to $75,000, Carr said. Steenbakkers said the system needs to be installed by next summer.

The Hyart committee also recently had to replace the popcorn machine to the tune of $9,000 and a multi-media digital projector for screen images other than the movie, at a cost of $12,000. New boilers purchased recently cost the committee about $7,000 in matching funds as part of a $25,000 project for which the redevelopment corp. received a grant.

As a result of all of the needed projects, the committee recently made the decision to raise ticket prices slightly, starting in January. Tickets will rise from $4 to $5, and Carr and Steenbakkers said they hope the public will understand. Either the theater undertakes the digital conversion or it will have to close, they said.

Matinee tickets will remain at $3 for the immediate future, they said.

By David Peck