The Seacoast Repertory Theatre Facilities Fund
For those of you reading this for the first time, here is a recap of what has happened this year.
Because of fires and other emergencies that have happened around the country, and even locally, the city is doing its due diligence by looking at every business and public venue in Portsmouth and making sure we are all up-to-date. We support their efforts – safety of our customers is a requirement for our mission.
Our building is complicated. It’s home to two condo associations, an Inn, a couple of other businesses, and as well as our theatre. This makes the division of costs, timelines, responsibilities, etc. a little tricky and often unpredictable.
As you can imagine, trying to coordinate large, expensive projects between the fire department, the building inspector, multiple condo associations, businesses, and individuals can be difficult—when you add a very busy theater to the mix the challenge is that much greater! Luckily, we have a very experienced, competent, and patient project manager who represents the majority of us. He and his firm are local and they have many years’ experience successfully working with the City of Portsmouth, so they are doing a great job helping us navigate through all sorts of obstacles.
Because so much is involved in this process, we recently received an update about the timeline and true costs of the work that needs to be completed by the end of the year. Everyone has been very understanding of our situation and have given us time to fundraise even as projects are completed. As you may know, we have already completed one of the major projects, the rebuilding of the stairs, but there’s still some work that needs to be done. This includes:
- Spraying insulation in some empty spaces around the building as a preventative measure
- Adding more lighting in places around the building
- Installing a sprinkler system in our lobby
- Adding a few more sprinklers heads in various locations throughout the building
- Digging out drainage and other work that is too complicated to explain in a bullet in the back of the building
So, we might have declared success prematurely, which is a little embarrassing. We thought we had funded the rebuilding of the stairs, but we have had to indefinitely delay collecting one of our large early pledges due to unforeseen circumstances. We are in a position where we need to replace this pledge.
In short, here is where we are at: between the remaining balance on our first phase, the stairs, the upcoming expenses on the second phase, which is a variety of work, and the estimate on phase three which is the installation of the sprinklers in the lobby, we will have to come up with approximately $90,000 by December 31st, 2018.
This is not an impossible goal by any means. We are exploring options, such as a line of credit to fund this in its entirety, but our goal is to fund this without acquiring debt. We have paid off over $300,000 in debts in the past three years and have a plan to be debt-free by the year 2020. Every dollar we spend on debt takes away from spending on our mission, and we would like to continue to our progress towards being debt-free.
We’re applying for grants for these expenses, but receiving them so late in the year makes it unlikely that they’ll be funded by the time we need them. So I’m writing to appeal to those of you who are able to make a donation, buy a raffle ticket, or purchase a stair. Any donation made in the links below go directly into a separate account that is earmarked entirely for these renovations.
We are also selling personalized staircase messages for our new staircase, and we have 5 left to sell. We would be incredibly grateful for your support!
All proceeds, of course, are earmarked for this project. Thank you for your consideration.