Harckham Announces $200,000 in Funding to Restore Historic Southeast Theater

Old Town Hall Theater Renovation is Centerpiece of Village Revitalization




(Peekskill, NY) Senator Pete Harckham, 40th Senate District, announced today that he has secured a State Aid to Municipalities grant of $200,000 to help renovate the theater in the historic Old Town Hall in Brewster, NY. The three-story building, built in 1896, is an architectural gem listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The building houses a beautiful theater in disrepair on the upper main level. Once restored, the theater will accommodate audiences of 200 or more and provide space for music concerts, theater productions, dance performances, film screenings, lectures, and meetings.         

The Cultural Arts Coalition, in cooperation with the Town of Southeast, is spearheading the restoration and the reopening of the theater. The $200,000 will be used to replace expensive windows in the theater that have not been upgraded. The remainder of the funds may be used for heating and cooling equipment or other needed renovations. 

The building, over the century, has been used as a government center and courthouse, community gathering place, theater, movie house, ballroom, teen canteen, museum and cultural arts center. 

Senator Pete Harckham said, “The $200,000 we’ve secured for the historic Southeast Old Town Hall will not only provide the funds to help renovate a world class theatrical venue for plays, concerts, films and other community events, it will also serve as a catalyst for economic development and revitalization of the village of Brewster.” 

Assemblymember Kevin Byrne said, “I’m grateful to the Senator for bringing back these tax dollars to invest in our community for the arts, and for investing in the Village of Brewster and our county.”

MaryEllen Odell, Putnam County Executive said, "This theatre is a local treasure. I am so pleased that the necessary repairs can now be made, enabling more to enjoy a show or performance in this historic landmark. Thank you, Senator Harckham, for securing the necessary funding."

Tony Hay, Southeast Supervisor, said, "We want to give residents and visitors another reason to frequent the village of Brewster and this grant focusing on Old Town Hall's restoration will be another step in accomplishing this goal. Our thanks to Senator Harckham for recognizing the importance of our downtown."
Lynne Eckardt, Town of Southeast Councilwoman, said, "We are so grateful to Senator Harckham for securing this generous grant. The Senator understands that a thriving art and cultural center is key to a revitalized and prosperous downtown area.”

Judy Marano, President, Cultural Arts Coalition, said, "Our mission at the Cultural Arts Coalition is to provide transformative and inspiring arts experiences. We are extremely grateful to Senator Harckham for securing funding for renovations to this landmark building and we look forward to expanding our programs at the Studio Around the Corner to larger audiences in the Old Town Hall Theater."