SHELBYVILLE, Ill. (WAND) - Organizers hope the soon-to-be-restored Shelbyville Chautauqua will be able to start having activities and events in the summer of 2021.
Work has started to save and restore what leaders of a Chautauqua Facebook page called a historic icon. They said they are thrilled to have the building repaired, restored and finally used again.
"It's the jewel, it's the crown and it's the center piece to our park and in our community," said Mark Shanks, Commissioner of Parks and Public Prosperities.
The post said Shelbyville's mayor will soon appoint a Chautauqua Management Committee, which will oversee programming, rentals, ongoing fundraising for stage and facilities improvements, adding historic displays, maintenance and upkeep.
One item addressed in the post was a patriotic display that will sit at the top of the Chautauqua.
"Many have complimented on the American flag, added to the top of the building," officials said. "While this one is temporary, we have a donor who wishes to pay for a permanent lighted replacement, like the original flag that once graced the peak!"
The historic venue was built in 1903 and served as prime location for people to see educational presentations, religious activities, theatre and musical performances.
"This is the only one that is standing in of it's size, it's the largest and the only one of it's kind in the world," said Shanks.
Leaders announced they hope to start scheduling activities and events for the summer of 2021. They thanked people who contributed over the years and didn't lose faith in saving the structure.