Port Angeles forum set Wednesday on shuttered Lincoln Theater board formation
they strive to raise the remaining $60,000 to purchase downtown Port Angeles’
shuttered Lincoln Theater, Scott Nagel and Karen Powell are also planning how
to run it as a nonprofit arts center.
and Powell, married business partners who also produce the Dungeness Crab &
Seafood Festival every October, made an offer of $235,000 last winter to Sun
Basin Theatres, the Wenatchee owner of the Lincoln.
pair have raised $175,000 in pledged donations and are now seeking foundation
grants, major sponsors — and people to serve on the board of directors.
week, Powell will host the first of three forums on Lincoln Theater board
process not only enfranchises people,” Powell said, “but helps others see how a
board can make or break an organization.”
flow of individual pledges has slowed, Nagel said. He’s turned his energies
toward major gifts, from local companies on up to the U.S. Department of
Commerce’s rural economic development division.
First: Let's observe that, to no one's great surprise, the "flow" of "individual pledges" has not just slowed, it's come to a halt. These figures have been static for quite a stretch now.
Second: Let's remember that pledges are easy to make, but harder to collect. It's not uncommon for efforts like this to have "default" rates of up to 20% - which means you really need to raise more than 100% of your goal just to make sure you make your goal.
Third: And most crucial...Just because you might be able to scrape together enough funds to buy this white elephant, doesn't mean you have the funds to do anything with it. There still doesn't seem to be any real talk of renovation costs, or who is going to pay them. (Those costs will be much more than the purchase price.) This is like a teenager spending every last penny they can save or borrow to buy a car - leaving them without any funds at all to buy gas, insurance, windshield wiper fluid, etc. In other words, the first step, as difficult as it is, is actually the easy part.
Fourth: Has anyone associated with this done any of the studies that would show if this project is likely to succeed? Is there a business plan? A market analysis? A traffic study? Or...
Fifth: Or...Is the plan to just hope for the best and let Scott and Karen run this? The same Scott and Karen whose one signature event still runs in the red every year? Again, that doesn't exactly inspire confidence, or seem like a roadmap to success.
It sure seems like Port Angeles would benefit from less effort on private pipe dreams like this, and more effort on, say, public (water) pipes that would truly serve a need, and the entire community. So don't forget to vote, folks, and don't hold your breath waiting for the next show at the Lincoln.