Community tours performing arts center before deciding its fate at the polls

Voters agree three-to-one on Tuesday to borrow $1.1 million to buy the center

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  • Sadie Cirbus and Mikayla Wensley (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Sandy Nagler, Frank Sambets, Robert Valentine and Walt Papailo (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Melissa Padham-Maass and Leila Maass (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Walt Papailo, Frank Sambets, Sandy Nagler and Robert Valentine (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Jim Lopolito, Steve Cirbus and Ryan Wensley (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Israel Campos, owner and operator of the Cancun Inn in Sugar Loaf, and town board member Robert Valentine (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Ales and Paul Romano (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Maureen Cooley (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Sandy and Michael Rogers (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Jeff and Lori Streichert (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Kristin Palmer and John Vero (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Jesus and Lorey Morales (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Conversations took place in many areas of the facility (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Lew Donnelly and Michael Winsch (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Gail Phillips and her daughter, Heather Sorrell (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Hudson O’Brien and his mother, Alexandra (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Brian Koch, Kris Hartman, Jim Lopolito and Steve Cirbus (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Lydia Cuadros, Vin and Geraldine Finizia (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Chris Maurer, Lydia and Raul Cuadros (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Tracy Schuh (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Michele Deschler, Alison and Brian Leentjes (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

  • Conversations sprouted in every corner of the facility (Photo by Frances Ruth Harris)

By Frances Ruth Harris

— One hundred people meandered through "the gem of Sugar Loaf" on Sunday, Nov. 4.

An open house at the Sugar Loaf Performing Arts Center showcased the two inside theaters and one alfresco theater near the lake.

Voters on Tuesday agreed by more than three to one (3,292-1,040) that the Town of Chester should borrow $1.1 million to buy the center. A tour was led by Chester town board members Robert Valentine and Ryan Wensley, with Jim Lopolito, a hospitality consultant, and Steve Cirbus, an actor with a plan to turn the center into one of the area's premier cultural attractions.

Those on the tour said they were astounded by the array of lights in both theaters. Many asked to meet Richard Logothetis, who built and ran the theater for many years. But Logothetis was on a cruise.

Several said they hope the theater brings many shows to town and becomes an educational center for youth.

Tour-goers kept their energy going with the cookies, donuts, cider, and coffee served at the open house.

The proposition that the town should borrow $1.1 million to buy the center was one of three that Chester voters approved by wide margins on Tuesday.

Related storyRelated story at

"Town debates performing arts center purchase"

"Election results"

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