Salmar Theatres manager Joel de Boer said the best way to support the local theatres right now during the shutdown is to become a member with the Salmar Community Association. (Lachlan Labere - Salmon Arm Observer)

Salmar Theatres manager Joel de Boer said the best way to support the local theatres right now during the shutdown is to become a member with the Salmar Community Association. (Lachlan Labere - Salmon Arm Observer)

Salmar Theatres staff eager for Dr. Bonnie Henry to call “action”

Laser projector, screen upgrades mean no more 3D movies at Salmar Grand

It may take another month, or more, before any attractions come to Salmon Arm’s movie theatres

With the B.C. government having extended restrictions on gatherings through February, Salmar Theatre’s manager Joel de Boer is hoping things will have improved enough by March so that Provincial Health Officer Bonnie Henry might issue a call for “action” that will allow the city’s two independently owned and operated theatres begin a process of reopening.

While the theatres are OK financially, de Boer was still pleased and grateful to see an uptick in membership with the Salmar Community Association, the non-profit organization which oversees operations of the theatres. A membership drive around Christmas saw around 50 new members join – the most at one time in a long time according to de Boer, who would like to create a loyalty program of sorts that provides benefits for members when visiting the movies.

“I am hoping I can make the membership a little bit more than what it is,” said de Boer.

Despite limited movie releases over the past year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, de Boer said there are films that have screened elsewhere that are available to show in Salmon Arm when theatre’s reopen, including the sequels to Wonder Woman and The Croods.

During the theatre’s previous pandemic-related closure in 2020, several upgrades were made at the Salmar Grand, including new laser projectors, as well as an updated sound system. While the laser projectors result in a sharper picture, they also required replacing the remaining silver screens – which were necessary to play 3D movies.

Read more: Latest COVID-19 restrictions close Salmon Arm movie theatres

Read more: Coming soon: Salmar Grand announces July 3 reopening

De Boer explained the majority of moviegoers at the grand seemed to prefer the non-3D version of movies. So the Grand’s 3D projector was moved to the Salmar Classic, which will be used for films and possibly special 3D events such as concerts.

Currently, with the movie theatres still dark, de Boer said the best way to support the Salmar is by purchasing a $25 membership. In addition to supporting the society and its theatres, members also have a voice at the Salmar Community Association’s AGM, a virtual version of which is scheduled for Feb. 25. One of the items on the agenda is a special resolution for an application for a Canada Emergency Business Account benefit of up to $60,000. For more information about Salmar Theatres, membership and the AGM, visit salmartheatre.com.

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