Salmar Grand Cinema records successful year

It was a very good year for the Salmar Grand Cinemas, which reported an increase in income from 2015.

Salmar Grand Cinema records successful year

The board remains the same but the movies change constantly.

It was a very good year for the Salmar Grand Cinemas, says general manager Daila Duford in her annual “Reel Report” to the board and society members at the Nov. 24 AGM.

“There were two main reasons for that,” laughs Duford. “Star Wars and a very rainy summer.”

Income increased from $276,250 in 2015 to $313,296 in 2016, but so did expenses, which climbed from $73,103 in 2015 to $249,535 in 2016.

“The bottom line was down because we gave so much last year,” Duford says, noting the Salmar Association gave $150,000 more than the previous year – $100,000 to R.J. Haney Heritage Village for the new Montebello Place Project and $50,000 to Roots and Blues for their new building. And that’s on top of annual scholarships and grants.

More money will be going out in the coming year as the board and Salmar members who attended the AGM approved up to $900,000 for renovations at the Salmar Grand.

“We have preliminary plans and drawings to expand the lobby in order to allow for a larger concession and lobby space to make the space more functional,” says Duford of the 20-year-old building. “Planning will take several months but we’re hoping to begin them next fall.

Attendance at both theatres was up – by seven per cent to 114,223 theatre-goers at the Salmar Grand, and five per cent to 11,979 at the Salmar Classic.

Duford says support for the concession increases every year.

The Salmar Association employs a total of 25 people, most of whom are students. “It’s fantastic,” says the 33-year-old of working for the group that gives so much back to the community. “I never left. I have been at the theatre more of my life than not. I started when I was 14 and I still love it.”

Duford’s passion is evident in the Salmar’s award-winning promotions.

“We won at Show Canada in Los Angeles this year,” says Duford, of the Salmar’s 2015 Star Wars promotion that earned third place in the Blockbuster category and raised $3,600 for local food banks.

“We continue to be a desired location for live concerts and community events,” says Duford in her report. “This year we had many repeat events that were met with the usual crowds.”

Online ticket sales were launched in August, with amazing results, says Duford.

Plans are underway to launch Parent and Baby matinees and special showings for people with sensory sensitivities in 2017.

Duford continues to investigate new sources of alternative content for the Shuswap Classic.

“We’re enjoying yet another great MET and ballet season, several National Theatre presentations and the first ever Salmar Super Smash Bros video game tournament.”

The top 10 movies at the Salmar between Oct. 1 2015 and Sept. 30 2016 were:

1. Star Wars

2. Finding Dory

3. The Secret Life of Pets

4. Deadpool

5. Jason Bourne

6. Suicide Squad

7. The Revenant

8. Captain America: Civil War

9 Star Trek Beyond

10. Hunger Games Mockinjay Part 2