Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Flooded With Good Fortune

Nobody likes it when the police show up at their door at three in the morning.

For Beth Bewley-Randall, our executive director, the doorbell rang early in the morning on Saturday, April 8th. She had turned her phone off, so the police tracked her down at her house to tell her that the Englert had been flooded. Not as bad as the news could be from two uniformed gents at that time of day, but certainly worrisome nonetheless.

So, yes. A water pipe had burst outside near the street, in front of the Englert. Water poured under the doors into the lobby and proceeded to run down to the basement. By the time Beth got there (where she would stay for the next 8 hours), a couple of inches of water had managed to accumulate in our basement.

Luckily, the damage wasn't too severe: the structural integrity of the building wasn't compromised, the computer server and phone system was off the ground so remained untouched, and 95% of what was actually ruined turned out to be old boxes, papers, and other non-historic pieces of the building that needed to be thrown out anyway.

We sent a message to our volunteers, and several gave us boxes to help move things out. Others actually came and helped us Monday morning as we brought up load after load from the wet and dirty basement and threw it in the dumpster. All in all, it got cleaned up pretty quickly with everyone's help. A heartfelt THANK YOU to everyone who helped out in some way.

We were able to continue as scheduled with Grease that weekend, and most performers and ticketholders probably didn't know that anything had even happened. We had pretty good fortune. It could have been a lot worse.

P.S. I would've blogged about this much sooner, but for some reason Blogger had this blog tagged as "spam," so it took them about a week to figure out that real legitimate people are actually running this thing...

Thursday, March 6, 2008

The Princess Bride - why so late??

Astute Englert fans have noticed that our showing of The Princess Bride on March 27th starts at 9:00 - one hour later than our usual start time for most events. I've been surprised at the number of people who have asked me or other members of our team why this is. The official answer?

We want to see what happens.

Yep, we just want to try something different. I know the later time might make it harder for some of you to get here. Does that mean you won't come? I don't know. I know that a lot of you - especially college students - ask for events to start at 9 or later so you can get here after night classes. Will you come? I don't know. We'll find out.

The movie is only 98 minutes long, so you should still be home in time to catch the end of Letterman or Leno, or have enough time to get a seat at Joe's, Deadwood or wherever else you might hang out on a Thursday.

This is all part of a larger experiment called "what do we do with movies" - a sometimes overly complex combination of legalities, supply, market demand, pricing, concessions (food & drink) and other issues. I'll dive into some of the issues in a later post. In the meantime, enjoy our first movie of the year, one hour later than usual.