Nonprofit to buy Sugar Loaf performance center

Mid-Hudson Civic Center will continue mission of providing cultural entertainment in Orange County

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  • Paul Lloyd, president the Mid-Hudson Civic Center, addresses the public at the Sugar Loaf Performing Arts Center (Photo by Edie Johnson)

  • The Sugar Loaf Performing Arts Center

— Live shows in Sugar Loaf will start again in only eight weeks, with the Mid-Hudson Civic Center's agreement Friday to buy the Sugar Loaf Performing Arts Center.

The nonprofit Civic Center also owns Mair Hall and McCann Ice Arena in Poughkeepsie and Ice Time Sports Arena in Newburgh. The center has simultaneously entered into a management contract to operate the facility until the formal closing expected in late July or early August.

The Sugar Loaf Performing Arts Center is currently owned and operated by the Kings Theatre Company, a non-profit organization incorporated in 1998. The center has produced musicals, dance recitals, rock concerts, symphonies, dramas, and children’s shows.

“We are extremely excited about acquiring the Sugar Loaf Performing Arts Center,” said David Wise, board chair for the Civic Center. “It allows us to continue our mission of providing cultural and entertainment opportunities to the community while extending our reach into Orange County.”

The Sugar Loaf Performing Arts Center was designed and built in 1992 by Richard and Susan Logothetis and transferred to the nonprofit Kings Theater Company in 2012. It's on 8.8 acres of landscaped grounds that includes parking for 900. It includes five live performance venues.

“This is a spectacular facility,” said Paul Lloyd, president of the Civic Center. “For those who have never been to a show here, they are in for a real treat.”

The Main Theater has a seating capacity of 689 including the balcony and orchestra pit. The Pavilion provides seating for 262 and offers a wide variety of configurations for performances, corporate meetings and private parties. The Lawn — an outdoor amphitheater with its concrete stage pad and level grass lawn can — accommodate approximately 3,000 concert patrons. The outdoor Wharf Theater is used during the summer to host children’s theater, Shakespeare festivals and theatrical productions. The final venue, The Gallery, is a second-floor lobby that is available to host small receptions, to provide additional rehearsal space and to exhibit the works of local artists.

The Sugar Loaf Performing Arts Center operated with a volunteer staff and board of trustees with a mission to enrich the lives of the citizens of the Hudson Valley through the presentation of the finest local, national and international artistic performances and by providing education and community involvement programs that support, enhance and expand the appreciation for the arts.

“After searching the capacity of government, foundations, private interests and educational institutions, we believe we have found the next steward of this incredible facility in the Mid-Hudson Civic Center,” said Kevin Kern, president of the Sugar Loaf Performing Arts Center Board of Directors.

The Kings Theater Company will assist the new owners with fundraising, volunteer recruitment and community outreach.

The center has recently hosted famous acts like Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes, Suzanne Vega, The Greater New York Wind Symphony, The Golden Dragon Acrobats from China,

Broadway Comes to SLPAC with Andrea McArdle, and the Hudson Valley Jazz Festival with Dave Liebman. The new owners say they will immediately start preparing to attract new shows and anticipate being able to present events early this summer.

“This purchase will improve the quality of life in Sugar Loaf and ensure the long-term availability of art and musical performance for Orange County residents,” said Orange County Executive, Steve Neuhaus. “The Mid-Hudson Civic Center has a proven track record of success in Orange County with Newburgh’s Ice Time Sports Complex. Thanks to its partnership with the Performing Arts Center, Mid-Hudson Civic Center has saved a community treasure and will raise the curtain on exciting opportunities for local tourism and economic development.”

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