Final year in the Palace
The Long-serving manager of the Palace Theatre Recreation Centre, Steph Openshaw, is set to hang up her skates and hand over the reins at the end of the year.
After nearly 12 years in the role, Ms Openshaw has decided to part ways with the skating rink and movie theatre centre, choosing to instead spend more time with her family.
Located in a 1930s-built Burt Street building, the Palace Theatre has been through a number of changes over its near 80 years in the community, but Ms Openshaw said it still held promise for a bright future.
“It is hard to know that Christmas is going to be it for me, but I know there is a big future here and I am excited to see where that leads,” she said.
“What I would like to see is the centre fully restored, because there are still works in progress to restore the foyer … and eventually have all new roller blades.
“And people engaging with the centre more, I think it could be utilised more during the week throughout the day because it just sits here doing nothing otherwise.”
Admitting the Palace Theatre had its struggles over the years, Ms Openshaw said she hoped to see someone with fresh ideas and spare time on their hands step up to the plate.
She said attendance at the centre went in cycles, sometimes seeing more than 100 skaters during one session, and at others only a few.
“Because this is such a transient town, we often have people coming in who say they never knew we were here … and sometimes those people have lived here for years,” she said.
“So we do have to repeat some of our ideas every now and then, because they will often work for a bit and then drop off, and then when new people come to town it can be popular again.”
Ms Openshaw said she felt the job would be best suited to somebody who did not need to work, but wanted to, and had the ability to give up time on weekends.
“But on the other hand, if we fill the position it might not actually be as manager, it might be to employ a few people to split the work between them over weekends,” she said.
The Palace Theatre is currently open on Sundays for two skating sessions, beginners and general skating, and is also available for birthday party bookings, disco parties, end of season sporting functions and movie nights.
Additional skating sessions on Tuesdays and Thursdays are also introduced during the school holidays.
The Palace Theatre Film Society screens a movie in the upstairs cinema on the last Wednesday of each month, and the centre has also hosted sit-down functions and dinners in the past.
For more information on the centre, phone 0427 990 019.