November 26, 2012 at 6:28am
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Independent theaters all around the nation are facing a challenge - go digital or go dark. The Blue Mouse Theatre in Tacoma's Proctor District stares this dilemma right in the lens. Without the budget to finance the $100,000 required to switch its 35mm projectors over to digital, Blue Mouse is asking fans and friends for help. It has launched a Help Save the Blue Mouse Theatre Kickstarter campaign, hoping to raise the funds by mid-January 2013. With the new digital projector, the theater will be able to keep with the times, but also anticipates much higher image and sound quality.
"The Blue Mouse does not have the ability to finance this major capital expenditure out of its annual earnings. Our best option is to ask you, our loyal Blue Mouse patrons and the community to help us keep our doors open by making a contribution toward this historical transition. This change will ensure the same quality of programming and allow us to continue offering the latest movies,” states its Kickstarter page.
Don't know why you should bother? Here are 10 reasons to help you understand the awesome that is Blue Mouse.
10. The Blue Mouse has only 11 more years until its 100th birthday! The theater has been screening movies consistently for 89 years, making it the longest continuously running movie house in the state.
9. Blue Mouse oozes with historical ambiance. The building is on the Tacoma, state and national historic registers. Even though theater managers in the 1930s painted over some original detailing, the theater has been restored to its original charm. Today, light sconces, terrazzo floors, the mahogany doors and other details are original work.
8. Blue Mouse has housed the Tacoma Sister Cities Movie Festival for 10 years. The Sister Cities festival focuses on films from Tacoma's 11 sister cities, which include such far-flung destinations as Davao, Philippines; Aalesund, Norway; and Kitakyushu, Japan.
7. This is just about the only theater left on the face of the planet that doesn't charge $10 for an evening show, and it is the only discount theater left in Tacoma. Regular shows are $5. Tuesdays and matinees are just $4. Mondays are $3.
6. Not only does the building score historical merit, but artistic as well. Many moons ago Dale Chihuly designed the blue mice scurrying along the marquee.
5. You can do the "Time Warp" at The Blue Mouse again and again and again. Most saturdays the theater screens The Rocky Horror Picture Show at midnight. Bonus: the Blue Mousketeers dress up and re-enact the madness on the front stage below the screen.
4. The popcorn is so delicious many people come in off the street just to buy it, according to theater manager Susan Evans. You can also bring in your Blue Mouse coffee cup and receive free coffee during a show.
3. You may rent the theater and have your own party, or your kid's birthday party, making little Johnny the coolest kid on the block.
2. Blue Mouse sits in the middle of the cozy Proctor District surrounded by restaurants and shops. Proctor has a little village feel to it. You won't find that quaintness at mass-market Regal and Galaxy theaters.
1. The Blue Mouse is about community. Blue Mouse moviegoers have been plopping down in its seats movies since childhood. Many walk to the shows. Many had their first date at the Mouse. The Blue Mouse Theatre is your kind, sweet grandfather.
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