LOGAN — What does it mean to be a community bank? For Merchants National Bank of Logan, it means lending a hand whenever they can. Two years ago, the Logan Theater, Inc. group went to the bank with the idea of purchasing the Logan Theater with the intention of renovating it. Knowing the numerous challenges that lay ahead, but seeing the determination in this group, the bank provided the lending to purchase the building. Since then, the Logan Theater group has poured their hearts and souls into this endeavor.
For two years, the organization made steady progress on the renovations. The organization applied for grant monies, but when the corona virus pandemic struck, the grant monies, in the amount of $500,000, were postponed for three months to possibly a year or more.
Reaching this impasse, the Logan Theater and Community Arts Center approached Merchants National Bank asking for assistance. Merchant’s stepped up to the plate, lending funds for the continuation of renovations for the second and third floors, along with offering to donate an amount equal to the annual amount due on the original loan to purchase the building.
“They are a hundred percent behind our project and believe it will make the change we need to see in our downtown to bring it back to life. They have proved to us that they are very much a community bank and here to make an impact in our community,” Sheila Wolfe, Logan Theater and Community Arts Center Executive Director, stated.
In honor of their willingness to step out in faith and provide the Logan Theater in this time of need, the lobby naming rights have been assigned to the Merchants National Bank of Logan.
“The Logan Theater renovation project continues. “We are in the last stages of phase one renovations. Drywall is almost complete on the second and third floors, with painting, floor finishes and hardware to finish. We are estimating mid- October for completion of this phase and are so excited for the school district and Hocking County Children’s Chorus to occupy their new homes,” Wolfe added.
However, the organization still needs the help of the community to reach this goal. The organization has revved up its capital campaign, including adding a Go Fund Me account, a progress banner on the front of the building, and will soon release some new fundraising ideas that benefit the community as well as the theater.
“One simple way to give, is to just donate the same amount you would normally spend if you and your family were going out to the movies. These donations will add up and before you know it, you will be attending movies in your own community,” Wolfe continued.
The organization would like to take this time to thank all of those who have given to the theater project so far.
“It’s a big undertaking, but our community has always been willing to take care of one other. This is no exception. We continue to receive support, interest, and excitement from our community members, and we are thankful,” she concluded.
Written and submitted by Sheila Wolfe, Logan Theater and Community Arts Center Executive Director.