'Very positive reception': Heritage group asks city to help preserve Capitol Theatre artifacts
For 50 years, Saskatoon’s coveted Capitol Theatre was the place to watch a movie – beginning in 1929 with the very first sound picture in the city.
This year marks the 40th anniversary since the theatre’s demolition and the Saskatoon Heritage Society is asking for the city’s help in preserving some of its artifacts.
Peggy Sarjeant, the society's president, penned a letter to Mayor Charlie Clark and City Council asking for artifacts to be collected and put on display for public viewing.
With the city discussing revamping its downtown core, Sarjeant thought this was the best time to discuss the matter and she did so at a council meeting on Monday.
"Some form part of the décor of several businesses around the city, while many more are currently in storage in less than ideal conditions," Sarjeant wrote in the letter.
"These artifacts are large and impressive and, once restored, could be brought together to replicate the entrance and part of the interior of the theatre."
She suggested the artifacts be used in something such as a new Downtown Experience Centre or a civic museum.
The city said it’s open to the idea of including the artifacts in a downtown conversation.
The artifacts belong to the Saskatoon Heritage Society, 25th Street Theatre, and the Persephone theatre, while the city has stored the items as a way to help.
"The city would like to see them preserved, so we almost did it in kind to these groups to ensure that at some point when they are ready to be reused, they will be reused," said Catherine Kambeitz, the city’s senior planner and heritage and design coordinator.
Sarjeant said the feedback has been positive.
"Some mixed, but on the whole, very positive reception and certainly a willingness to embark on a conversation."