Friends of the Coronado excited for the return of live shows

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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Entertainment venues have been some of the hardest hit during the pandemic. But one Rockford theater is starting to plan event later this year.

We sat down with Friends of the Coronado’s executive director who tells us the venue is preparing to welcome back patrons.

Many events at the Coronado Theater were canceled but some new upcoming acts in the next few months mean the light at the end of the tunnel for the Rockford staple.

“The theater is just so beautiful and to have the doors shut–it’s been hard,” explained executive director Beth Howard.

During the pandemic, the Coronado Theater was forced to cancel or postpone most events. Beth Howard, executive director of Friends of the Coronado, says it was a very difficult year.

“As the Friends of the Coronado the organization that twenty years ago had shut this theater down to save it and bring it back as this amazing performance art center and to have these larger performances here we couldn’t be more excited,” explained Howard.

Big acts are once again being booked. Comedian Gabriel Iglesias will take the stage on October, 15.

“It’s been tough for us to see this theater empty because we know the joy it brings to our community and everyone who walks through that door. So, it’s a joyous occasion we’ve been waiting for this celebration and it will be a celebration,” explained Howard.

COVID-19 guidelines laid out by WCHD will be followed.

“We’re so confident in our Winnebago County Health Department and in our city leadership who owns this building. The city owns this building and this is going to be handled in a way I know is going to be responsible and safe,” she added.

Howard says the Friends of the Coronado couldn’t be more excited for opening night.

“We’ve got some work to do on our beautiful Marquee to make sure every single light bulb is lit and it’s going to be on that first opening night. Everything is going to be perfect.”

So far there are 9 act booked at the theater. The first will take place at the end of August.

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