Lights, camera, and Remodel

by | Jul 2022

MAYBE IT’S the pollen, but something about springtime creates an itch within us all to get busy. Whether it’s a simple task like cleaning out a cluttered closet or a more elaborate one such as adding on a sunroom or a screened-in porch, the start of spring gets wheels churning for project boards and “honey-do” lists that last all summer long.

A particular project that will affect countless people within our community is taking place within the auditorium at Coffee County Central High School (CCCHS). The auditorium at CCCHS has been in dire need of updating for decades. CCCHS Principal Paul Parsley shared, “Our auditorium is utilized for theater productions, music productions, large school meetings, and even community events from time to time. Over the years, the theater has become worn and dated.” If you have ever visited the space for a band performance, choir concert, play, or any other event, you might have been mildly disappointed by the hospitable capacity of the space. The auditorium contained worn and tattered seats, spotty microphones, and ancient speakers that popped and hummed. Though there was an undeniable nostalgic charm that the old theater radiated, everything has an expiration date. Make way for a new start to be born!

Initially, the remodel plans consisted of tearing out and replacing the old seating, and carpet flooring, then adding a fresh layer of paint. These updates were madepossible by a combination of local and federal Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) funds. However, when President Phillip Calahan of Peoples Bank and Trust heard the project had run out of funds and that none of the sound equipment or technology within the auditorium would be replaced, he decided that the bank would do everything they could to help. 

After a few internal meetings, Peoples Bank and Trust decided to donate a $15,000 check to cover the cost of a top-of-the-line sound system, including new speakers, a soundboard, wireless microphones, hanging choir microphones and amps, and the installation fees associated with the project. Parsley shared, “We are most thankful for People’s Bank of Manchester and their commitment to the school and our students. The financial contribution from the bank will assure a high quality of sound for our theater and music productions and meetings.”

If you were to step foot inside the auditorium today, you would see the beginning phases of the demolition. All of the old chairs and floors have been removed, leaving the space feeling empty and cold. However, new life and creativity will be flowing out of the room soon, as several contractors are working tirelessly on the various parts of the renovation. With all hands on deck the project is set to be complete by fall, just in time for the new school year. Parsley concluded, “Our school stakeholders and our arts programs in particular are excited about what the new and clean look will bring. We are all looking forward to putting the newly renovated theater to use.” GN

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