German Village Gazette

$40,000 in renovations planned for Fest Hall

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A new and improved Brent Warner Fest Hall will make its debut in early February.

The German Village Society will spend $40,000 on renovations to the second-story auditorium, along with some other improvements to the Meeting Haus.

"I think that the Fest Hall is a focal point for this community," said Shiloh Todorov, German Village Society director.

"It probably sees thousands upon thousands of people every year." Todorov said.

"So it deserves a little TLC, a little freshening up, and this project does that," she said.

Todorov said starting Dec. 21, the space will be closed for more than a month as the work is completed.

However, it will not cause a disruption in programming, she said.

"Nothing's had to be rescheduled," Todorov said. "We knew it was coming so we haven't taken rentals or meetings."

The work includes refinishing the natural wood floors in the auditorium, a new cork surface on the walls to support artwork and other hanging material, and a lighter color for the ceiling.

There will be new paint and carpeting up the stairs to the second floor. The restrooms also will get a fresh coat of paint.

In addition, the doors that lead to a storage area under the stage will be repaired and reconfigured in a way that better preserves them, Todorov said.

The Meeting Haus is a well-known spot in the neighborhood, where community groups meet and several events are held throughout the year.

Last year, David Schooler, owner of Town & Country Travel in the village, donated $25,000 to the GVS to remodel the society offices and the kitchen.

However, it's been 18 years since there have been any significant renovations to the Fest Hall.

The room is in use about four nights a week for various member functions, Todorov said.

The hope is to attract more nonmember rentals, such as weddings, meetings, retirement parties and such.

There were about a dozen in 2012, she said.

"I think that there's plenty of time every month where that could be a revenue-generating room," Todorov said. "It's a really nice space.

"The other piece of it is we want to support doing more art exhibits.

"We've got six artists or groups contracted to do exhibits. So we want to have the space complementing that."

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