Grant to help rural theaters go digital

DENVER – Downtown Colorado, Inc., a nonprofit membership organization that helps provide educational and technical assistance to downtowns, commercial districts and town centers, has received a grant by the Gates Family Foundation to support conversion of small rural theaters to digital technology through direct technical assistance.

The notification of the grant arrived just after the Colorado Economic Development Commission agreed to also provide funding to rural theaters for conversion to digital projectors.

Many of Colorado’s theaters face closure if they are unable to convert to digital projectors. The Gates and Boettcher foundations approved funds for nonprofit-owned theaters that work with the Denver Film Society as a pass-through entity to make equipment sub-grants to rural theaters.

The grant to Downtown Colorado Inc. will support work with Small Business Development Center directors to create technical-assistance guidance for theater owners, with a special focus on those who are small, rural, historic, and privately owned. A theater and arts facility summit will be held Sept. 10-13 in Grand Junction to identify best practices for creating sustainable and community-driven models for theaters in Colorado’s downtowns.

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