Event to raise awareness for Sullivan Opera House project, community preservation

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Richard Poole

On Saturday, Sept. 24, at 9 a.m., at Old Man River in downtown McGregor, an informative and enlightening event will explore the history of McGregor’s opera houses, successfully completed projects in other cities and the benefits of historic preservation in the community. The event will raise awareness for community efforts to restore McGregor’s Sullivan Opera House (pictured).

Preservation promotes respect for those who came before us, and those who will come after. Preservation encourages citizen activity to become involved and fulfill their right and responsibility to create their community’s future.  On Saturday, Sept. 24, at 9 a.m., at Old Man River in downtown McGregor, an informative and enlightening event will explore the history of McGregor’s opera houses, successfully completed projects in other cities and the benefits of historic preservation in the community. 

Special guest and author, professor Richard Poole, will present “Tent Repertoire, Circle Stock, Airdomes and Opera Houses: Gone but not Forgotten,” an entertaining, illustrated talk detailing the incredible amount of theatre available to small-town Americans between 1870 and 1940.

Other featured speakers include Christina Dollhausen on the Stoughton Opera House restoration and economic impact on Stoughton, Wis. Pat Schultz and Scott Borcherding from Mason City will discuss Wright on the Park and the restoration of the Historic Park Inn Hotel designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and how it continues to add tourism and continuing education to the public about its place in the context of architectural history. Gary Goyette, from Guttenberg, will also speak on the importance of preservation for a community.

At the conclusion of the presentations, McGregor Mayor Harold W. Brooks will recognize three McGregor families for their contributions to the preservation of McGregor history, architecture and character. 

Admission for the event is free and complimentary refreshments will be served. The event is sponsored by the McGregor Historic Preservation Commission, Friends of the Sullivan Opera House and Humanities Iowa.

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