West Bend Common Council approves filing for grant to help restore Historic West Bend Theatre

August 22, 2017 – West Bend, WI – The West Bend Common Council voted unanimously Monday to move forward with a resolution to file an application for a grant that would help fund renovation of the Historic West Bend Theatre.

The Community Development Investment Grant Program is run through the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation.

According to inwisconsin.com 

  • there is $3 million in available funding.
  • grants will be limited to 25 percent of eligible project costs up to $250,000
  • at least 50 percent of funds will be awarded to cities/towns under 50,000 in population per U.S. Census data
  • the program is expected to assist 20 communities.

Theatre spokesman John Torinus said the maximum grant is $250,000 and “it should help a lot.”

“We bought the building from Ascendant Holdings, LLC for $250,000 and there was a donor that put in a down payment of $100,000,” he said. “There is a three-year mortgage on the rest.”

A portion of the 12-page resolution packet presented to the council is below.


According to Section 1, Project Description:

-There will be phases to the project, geared to the community fund raising. The first phase is planned for $1.5 million to $2 million. Other phases could be as much as $3 million.

-Construction will being in early 2018, with an opening planned for fall of 2018.

According to Section A, 2. Financial Justification:

Historic West Bend Theatre will use a variety of funding sources including:

-Two lead donors have committed to $200,000. Twenty other potential major donors have been identified.

-The previous owner sold the vacant structure at $70,000 below his appraisal on the building. In addition, the former owner has agreed to a three-year mortgage, with no principal or interest payments in three years. It will require a balloon payment at the end of three.


The West Bend Theatre, 125 N. Main St., was built in 1929; it closed in 2007.


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