Slap-up celebrations for city’s party palace wanted
The Regent on Broadway is approaching the 20th anniversary of its restoration, and the city council is being urged to have a party.
Theatre manager Charles Forbes said the milestone would be marked with some sort of celebration in May 2018, but with council backing, it could be ‘‘brilliant’’.
A $13 million restoration of the historic 1930 building was completed in May, 1998.
The plan for a grand anniversary was pitched in a submission on the proposed Annual Plan by theatre publicist Malcolm Hopwood, who proposed a festival could be paid for in a three-way split between council, sponsors and ticket sales.
The estimate for ratepayers’ share would be about $100,000.
Hopwood said the anniversary coincided with the city’s 150th birthday, providing a double reason for a celebration that could be hosted across the city over 10 or more days.
City councillor Jim Jefferies, who was awarded a QSM partly in appreciation of his efforts on the restoration project, said it was hard to believe it was almost two decades since the theatre reopened.
He said he supported the festival plans in principle.
‘‘The Regent is really worth celebrating. It is an icon of Palmerston North.’’
But the prospect of finding another $100,000 that had not been budgeted for would be another matter.
The committee of council has set aside two days on May 24-25 to debate its budget and consider submissions.
Regent on Broadway in its glad-rags.