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Changes For Community Auditorium

By Adam Riley Dec 14, 2022 | 1:48 PM

Thunder Bay’s Community Auditorium is now a non-profit organization, this comes following a vote by Thunder Bay City Council Monday evening that creates an arms length type of relationship between it and the city.

This new organizational structure will allow the auditorium, which was limited in the past to access funds, the ability apply for grants or even hold lotteries. The profits of which would go towards repairs and upkeep for the nearly 40 year old structure.

“This building needs some HVAC repairs, the windows are starting to get a little old, the draperies on the stage are getting a little bit thread bare,” said General Manager Trevor Hurtig, “It just requires normal things that most buildings would require at that age.”

Prior to the change the Auditorium was something of a mesh of city department, non-profit and charity organization. But now it will be fully a non profit, which Hurtig says will open up those new opportunities.

The deal also includes more than three million dollars in financial assistance from the city, two million of which is connected to the accumulated deficit, and for capital funding.

“They wanted to start us off on a good foot, which is that you can’t take an organization that had been rolling along nicely, and just say ‘Ok well you’re cut off at the knees and off you go’, I don’t know if that is the right analogy but nonetheless. So that was a very much a cognizant piece in all of this.”

Hurtig notes this new direction also leaves the Community Auditorium with not a lot of room for error and it will need to be very strategic in how it moves forward. He specifically referred to putting a pause on Bluesfest once again to make sure the organization was where it needs to be, running properly at full capacity, before taking on riskier projects like Bluesfest.



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