Pendragon has recently completed the first phase of a feasibility study for a theater/community arts center in Saranac Lake. This phase looked primarily at requirements, both for Pendragon as well as others in the community. The conclusion was both hopeful and sobering. While there was much support for a Community Arts Center as a catalyst for revitalization of downtown, no one was yet willing to commit to using such a facility in a way which would allow us to project an economically viable business plan for such a center on an ongoing basis. Therefore, unless someone else is willing to step up, Pendragon should focus on just a theatre.
Many in the community, including Pendragon’s board, are inspired by and committed to the potential and benefits of a community arts center. Further grant requests are underway, and the village has taken the lead on one of those. We are proceeding with finding creative uses of a center which could yield a strong business plan, as well as with the next phase of a study to determine demand for arts (“If we build it will they come?”). Our ultimate plans will be guided by Pendragon’s certain need, the benefits to the community, availability of capital, and the business plan.
What’s wrong with Pendragon the way it is? Will we lose the “funky” feeling if we move?
Our beloved and careworn facility needs significant investment to be able to operate in the future. If that kind of investment is needed, can we make it in a way that can benefit more than just Pendragon? Can we retain the “feel” of Pendragon? We believe the answer to both questions is YES.
Why did we do a feasibility study?
There are many widely varied opinions as to needs, locations, benefits, and issues. We partnered with a firm who used their experience to collect those needs and to generate requirements in a logical manner. Doing this also helps with grants and fundraising. We will continue to use as much local knowledge and expertise as possible to evaluate options going forward.
What are the benefits to the Village?
Saranac Lake has gained a reputation as a vibrant center of arts in the Adirondacks. One potential for a new theater/ community arts center is to provide a physical presence for organizations such as Saranac Lake Art Works and others, supporting the many artists in the region. In addition, Pendragon adds more than half a million dollars to the local economy annually. The Village sees a Theater/ Community Arts Center as a catalyst to further expand that positive economic impact and the momentum of responsible growth represented by such projects as the Hotel Saranac renovation.
Why not stay where we are? Why locate downtown?
A downtown location will benefit both Pendragon and downtown businesses by increasing foot traffic for all. A renovated or new facility will improve the face of downtown. In addition, grants are more widely available for projects aimed at downtown revitalization, including using art as a catalyst for job growth.
What if I have ideas? How can I help?
First, you can provide your email address to email@example.com. You can also send questions and constructive input there. Our current plan is to use our email distribution list for an online survey.
OUR MISSION: Pendragon Theatre is an ensemble of artists, based in the Adirondacks, dedicated to preserving the vitality and enhancing
the quality of professional theatre through year-round performance and educational programs.