Many thanks to DR TOM DUBUQUE for this news story on the State Theater in Eau Claire, WI. We paid a visit during our 2007 Conclave.
The theater will celebrate its 85th birthday on January 14, 2011 and as part of the celebration, local television station WEAU is running a 4 part series on the history and future of this gem.
WEAU-TV Eau Claire
“It’s a staple of downtown Eau Claire that’s had people throughout the region singing, dancing and laughing for decades. The history of the State Theatre is the first in our series as we look forward to its 85th birthday on January 14th. 85 years ago, the doors of the State Theatre opened. The first curtain opened. “There were crowds that were large enough, the paper reported the next day, that at the second showing they actually broke down the doors. They were that excited to get in,” Jim Radloff, who plays piano at the theatre and has researched its history, said. The original days of course there was no TV or movies so this is what people did on a Friday night. All 1,100 seats would be full every night,” Executive Director of the Eau Claire Regional Arts Center which houses the State Theatre Ben Richgruber said.”