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Pendragon says it’s raised $4.5M of $7M needed for new theater

An artist’s rendering shows what the new Pendragon Theater at 56 Woodruff St., Saranac Lake, could look like.

SARANAC LAKE — With a new $145,000 state grant, Pendragon Theatre says it has raised over $4.5 million out of a projected $7 million target to build a new downtown location.

More than half of that fundraising total so far comes from state grants, such as $2.5 million pledged through the Downtown Revitalization Inititive and $100,000 announced in November for green site redevelopment.

The latest funding promise came as Regional Economic Development Council pledges were awarded Friday, with the North Country drawing a package of $67.9 million in awards. Pendragon’s portion came through the New York State Council on the Arts’ Arts and Culture Facilities Improvement Project.

These funds will be applied to a building Pendragon has bought at the corner of Church and Woodruff streets. Pendragon will repurpose the former home-improvement and grocery store to create a new theater.

“I see the new building as more than just an upgrade of the current Pendragon theater,” Lee Keet, of Saranac Lake and the Cloudsplitter Foundation, said in a press release from Pendragon. “I view it as an additional anchor in the revitalization of that section of the village, including the proposed new museum at the (former) Medical Associates building … the Hotel Saranac, the expanded Nori’s, and the myriad other improvements that are transforming the central village.”

“Pendragon Theatre is proud to be part of the fabric of the arts in Saranac Lake and to be able to participate in and contribute to economic revitalization,” Pendragon Artistic Director Kimberley Bouchard said in the release. “We are looking forward to expanding our artistic and community programming year-round, to continuing to strengthen our artistic capacity with new technologies and improved audience environments in the new building, and to actively collaborating with our business partners as Saranac Lake continues to develop as a regional destination center.”