New grant will help Pec Playhouse repair collapsed roof

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PECATONICA, Ill. (WTVO) — Over the winter, the roof of the Pec Playhouse collapsed under the weight of ice and snow. Now, a new grant will help the theater rebuild.

The Rockford Area Arts Council presented the theater, located at 314 Main St, with a $10,000 check on Thursday.

Pec Playhouse Board President Suzanne Wiegert says the money will help kickstart efforts to get the theater back up and running.

“It will greatly help in the beginning steps to all this,” she said. “Any small costs, say we put on a show and there’s royalties involved, that grant will help us pay for that. So those fundraising efforts can be 100% profit for us.”

Initially, board members looked into the possibility of repairing the damage, but decided against it after talking to several structural engineers.

“It would be more cost-effective and save time in actually bringing the current space down and building fresh,” Wiegert explained.

But even though a full rebuild is the best financial option, the insurance payout will not cover all construction costs.

“We’re in the beginning stages of seeking out architectural bids, and once we’ve gotten those, then we’ll move onto construction bids, and once we’ve solidified both of those, we’ll be able to have an actual goal for the total cost of everything involved,” Wiegert said.

To make up the difference, Pec Playhouse plans to do what they do best.

“We’ve been blessed to have this building, but not having a space right now is not stopping us. So we’re going to continue to perform,” Wiegert said. “We’ve had other theatrical companies in the area offer their stages for us. So we’ve got a lot of plans in place for upcoming shows, not just in Pecatonica but in other areas as well.”

Pec Playhouse will hold an informational session to update the community on rebuilding and fundraising efforts. That will be held June 16th in Moss Hall on the Winnebago County Fairgrounds.

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