Sept. 2, 2009: Opportunity lost with theater project

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To The Editor:
I am somewhat shocked that the decision by Jonathan Starch and David France to sell the Galli-Curci Theatre hasn’t elicited more of a reaction here, but a few well-written letters and rebuttals. Lost in the lines of type is what these gentlemen were trying to do for Margaretville. I will admit that I know little about the disputed property and subsequent lawsuits other than what I’ve read in this paper, and quite frankly, I don’t care.
Messrs. Starch and France were attempting to invest a not so insignificant sum in something that would bring a family-oriented activity, not to mention spending dollars, to Margaretville. It would seem that this investment would benefit so many businesses in the town. Pre-movies dinners, post-movie ice cream, heck even a cocktail or two.
Instead of scaring off people willing to invest in our town we should be welcoming them with open arms. But after last year’s quashing of outdoor Movies on Main, another potential family-oriented activity, Mr. Potter has struck again. I can’t tell if he’s anti-family or anti-fun. I guess unless we’re buying guns or fishing equipment he doesn’t care much about either.
The fact of the matter is our town needs customers from outside the community to help the local businesses thrive. Especially in these economic times, people need a compelling reason to come to our town and spend money. Don’t we want Summerfields, the Binnekill Square Restaurant, Harry and the Hippie Chic and the Bun n’ Cone to thrive? How about the boutiques and children’s stores? Are the hardworking people in the town going to need multiple jobs forever to survive? The fact that our town couldn’t get behind these gentlemen and help create the theatre through partnership is astonishing. Whether through greed or bias, Mr. Potter has squashed a much needed draw to our town. To Steve Finkel I say, our opportunity was here. Quite an opportunity lost.

David Reilly,
Margaretville