P.O. Box 245, Seguin, TX 78156

Campbell Log Cabin

Birch Foundation Pledges $1 Million For Texas Theatre Restoration


Contact:

Steve Tschoepe, Chair, Texas Theatre Task Force, 830-401-1971

The Seguin Conservation Society has received the largest gift in its 54-year history from the Stephen and Mary Birch Foundation, Inc. A $500,000 contribution is the first installment of a $1 million pledge, the cornerstone gift in a $2.5 million capital campaign to restore the Texas Theatre at 425 N. Austin Street in downtown Seguin. In recognition, the 350-seat theater will bear the name of Stephen and Mary Birch Texas Theatre.

“I have endearing memories of those wonderful years growing up in Seguin," wrote Patrick J. Patek, president of the Birch Foundation since 1980, "spending my Friday evenings and Saturday matinees at the Texas Theatre with my parents, brother and cousins, watching the cowboy stars in black and white movies.”

Built in 1931 as an atmospheric movie palace, the theater has an ornate, Mediterranean-style interior with mica lamps, romantic murals, gilded shields and a sky-dome ceiling with twinkling stars. It was the setting for filming such movies as The Great Waldo Pepper, Raggedy Man, and The Ballad of the Sad Café. Purchased in 1997 by the Seguin Conservation Society, a non-profit 501(C) 3 organization, the restoration plans include a flexible, multi-purpose stage and expanded space for a variety of events - theatre, music, dances, receptions, recitals, film festivals and more. Architect Milton Babbitt A.I.A., instrumental in restoring the Majestic and Empire theaters in San Antonio, developed the construction and renovation plans.

“This cornerstone gift brings our campaign to 55% of our goal,” says Kay Martin, president of the Seguin Conservation Society. “The Birch Foundation has set the stage for other foundations and corporations to contribute toward the restoration of the Texas Theatre. We are grateful for the generosity of the Birch Foundation in supporting our vision of a performing arts center in a historic venue in Guadalupe County.”

The Stephen and Mary Birch Foundation Inc. is a Delaware private nonprofit 501(c)3 corporation founded in 1938. It has supported a wide range of programs nationally in education, science, medicine, social services, religion and the performing arts. Mr. Stephen Birch, an executive in the copper mining industry, established the foundation that carries the family name.

The Texas Historical Commission, San Antonio Conservation Society and the City of Seguin have previously awarded grants to the Seguin Conservation Society for the theater’s restoration. Donations are welcomed at SCS, PO Box 245, Seguin TX 78156. For information contact Steve Tschoepe, campaign chair, at 830-401-1971.


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The Seguin Conservation Society, a 501(c)3 organization, is dedicated to preserving historic buildings, objects and places in Seguin and Guadalupe County. Founded in 1952, the Conservation Society acquires and renovates threatened buildings, celebrates historical events, and engages the community in remembering, understanding and advancing its shared heritage. The organization currently owns and manages six historic properties, and generates financial and community support through monthly luncheons, educational book tours, an annual celebration of the city's founding, and tours of heritage homes

Doll House Tour with Schlather Middle School from Cibolo on April 2, 2017.

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