Berwick Theater Gets Hollywood-Sized Donation

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BERWICK -- The Berwick Theater and Center for Community Arts on Market Street has been in danger of shutting down for several years, but a generous donation made by one person has volunteers believing in miracles.

"We were struggling to pay our bills. We were struggling to get donations in because we didn't own the building. So when Kirk Bower stepped up and allowed us to own the building, it changed everything for us," Ginny Crake said.

Kirk Bower owns Kissinger's Floor and Wall on Market Street. He has lived in Berwick all his life. He donated $70,000 to the non-profit group that runs the theater so it could buy the building.

"I decided to give them some money to help get them going so they could get the grants and loans they needed to remodel," Kirk Bower said.

Buy why donate that much money? Bower says since he does not have children he wanted to give back to his community. He has fond memories of the theater.

"I spent many Saturdays. Mom would drop me off and I would go with some of my friends, meet them there and we would go and watch movies and then get a Cherry Coke downtown," Bower said.

Now that the nonprofit owns the building, it can apply for grant money to buy a much-needed digital projector.

"35 millimeter film is no longer being produced and so we can't get first run movies. Getting us the building allows us to own it and go out for grants and go out for more donations," Crake said.

People in Berwick say they're glad to hear the theater is staying open.

"Other movie theaters, it's very expensive and you have to pay a lot, even for drinks and stuff," Amanda Santamassino said.

As for Bower, he is happy he can look out the window of his business, see the theater across the street, and know he had a part in saving it.

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