Good Year for Arts -- and for the Merced Theatre

Sun-Star staffApril 22, 2013 

— Supporters of the historic Merced Theatre celebrated the first anniversary of the building's reopening with an open house Sunday afternoon.

Dozens of people attended the event, which was free to the public.

Since the theater opened a year ago, the venue has hosted 25 major events and about 18,000 patrons. The facility has been used for two weddings, a high school graduation and five school performances, and has shown dozens of movies.

The 1,187-seat theater has booked dates into next year.

Built in 1931, the Merced Theatre renovation project cost $14.4 million, which included $8.3 million in construction costs. Retired orthopedic surgeon Art Kamangar donated $1 million to the project.

The building was constructed in 1931 over a nine-month period at a cost of $380,000. The theater is believed to be the last project designed by San Francisco-based architects James and Merritt Reid, who designed the Grand Lake Theatre in Oakland, the Hotel del Coronado in San Diego, and San Francisco's Balboa Theatre, Fairmont Hotel and Cliff House.

Merced Sun-Star is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service