“Its closing will be like losing an important part of Brockport.”- Lisbet Barone.
BROCKPORT, N.Y- The Strand is a local theater in which the people of Brockport have been coming to for generations. For more than 100 years, this theater in downtown Brockport has been a part of many memories.
In 1916, The Strand opened making it the second oldest motion picture venue in the country. Back then, The Strand offered more than just movies, at that time, fashion shows, magic shows, variety shows, and election return readings were held in this theater.
Many of New York’s businesses have begun to open after being closed during quarantine and movie theaters are still waiting for the green light.
Jason Yantz, the General Manager of the Rochester Theater Management and owner of The Strand says the theater has been relying on the P.P.P loan, which is a $669- billion business loan program established by the U.S Federal government C.A.R.E.S Act that helps small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll. Yantz said this is not enough.
“The Strand has sat shuttered for this entire time period only relying on a PPP loan and other government funding to keep it alive. That money has quickly run out and we are in dire need of reopening or more government funding.” said Yantz.
The Strand has also implemented safety measures to protect the moviegoers.
“The National Association Of Theater Owners along with epidemiologists have created a set of safety protocols in order for movie theaters to operate during COVID-19 while keeping our customers and employees safe… There have been zero documented COVID outbreaks related to indoor movie theaters in the US.”
Saveyourcinema.com is the only thing posted on the theaters marquee. #SAVEYOURCINEMA formed by the National Association of Theater Owners across the United States encourages people to contact congress to fine more relief methods so that theaters can stay afloat.
“The Strand is in serious jeopardy of closing forever. We need to reopen immediately, or we need more government funding in order to survive. Over 100 years of history of entertaining the Brockport community could come to an end.” Yantz said.
The closing has hit closer to the village. Lisbet Barone, 21, a senior at the College at Brockport had made unforgettable memories at The Strand.
“The potential closing is upsetting, it was the closest go-to place to enjoy a movie. I made a lot of memories there since I was a freshman here.” said Barone.
“There is going to be one less social setting. It gives a sense of home having a movie theater so its closing will be like losing an important part of Brockport.”
A lot of effort has been put in by the owners of The Strand and theater owners across the country. Many safety measures have been taken, but is it enough to keep The Strand in Brockport?