PROSSER - Valley Theater Company now owns the Princess Theatre in historic downtown Prosser.
For the first time in its 52-year history, the non-profit community theater troupe has its own home. Since early 2009, VTC has managed the theatre for its previous owner, Mercer Canyons, Inc.
The Prosser-based family farming corporation purchased and renovated the 90-year-old theatre, re-opening it in 2007 and inviting VTC to stage its productions there. Prior to 2007, VTC performed in various Sunnyside schools.
During the three-and-a-half year capital campaign, VTC received more than 200 donations, topped with a matching donation from the Prosser-based Edgar E. Whitehead Foundation.
"We greatly appreciate the support of all our donors and the Whitehead Foundation. We also thank Mercer Canyons, Inc. for its generosity and patience in allowing us the time to raise the funds," said Candace Andrews, Capital Campaign Coordinator.
Dave Bayne, president of the Whitehead Foundation, recently said that the late Mr. Whitehead, a Prosser orchardist, wanted his legacy to support education, the hospital and arts, that he wanted Prosser people and the community to experience the arts. Members of the Whitehead Foundation Board felt their donation to VTC for the purchase of the Princess was an excellent opportunity to fulfill his wish.
Andrews added, "Collectively, our donors have made a promise to Prosser and the surrounding area that performing arts will always have a home here. This is an amazing gift for current and future generations."