Performances coming to historic Champaign theater

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CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WAND) – A Champaign theater has entertained the public for nearly a century.

The Virginia Theater originally opened in 1921 in the city’s business district. In its decades of service, it has been home to everything from movie screenings to vaudeville performances. After spending some time as a film-only facility, the Virginia Theater began hosting live theater in 1991.

The Champaign Park District put the theater through a series of renovations in an effort to improve the building.

“Around the 1990s it ran into some pretty hard times,” said Virginia Theater Director Steven Bentz. “You know, the economics of a single-screen movie theater were tough and the building was in need of full repair, so the City of Champaign and the Champaign Park District stepped in and the park district took over the facility in 2000.”

In 2002, Virginia Theater leaders started an annual membership drive through the mail in Champaign County.

The Lincoln Theater has several performances coming up, including one of James and the Giant Peach Jr. put on by students from 5th to 8th grade. It will run three times from Thursday, Nov. 16 to Saturday, Nov. 18.

Click here for more information about the Lincoln Theater.

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