The Capitol Arts Center has been a staple in our downtown community for a long time.

For decades, people have entered under the blinking marquee of the theater to enjoy watching some of their favorite plays and movies. Also, for decades, schoolchildren have gone during school hours to see plays they liked and, in some cases, probably found their niche in acting by watching those on stage before them.

As the years passed, though, the Capitol stopped showing movies in the late 1960s and hosted some plays and musicians there before the Southern Kentucky Performing Arts Center was built in 2011. The Capitol still hosts a few plays and is home to a few recurring events, such as Lost River Sessions and the Southern Circuit Tour of Independent Filmmakers, but not like it did in its heyday, which is a real shame. We’ve editorialized that we are hopeful the Capitol will return to doing more plays and begin playing movies once again, since we believe there would be a lot of interest in having a venue downtown that not only has plays but also plays movies people want to see.

Hopefully, with recent repairs to the Capitol, these things will come to fruition. A big problem the Capitol had was that it was operating a HVAC unit from the 1980s and had a roof that needed repairs. That HVAC unit has now been replaced with a newer, more efficient model and the roof has been repaired, which should allow the venue to expand its performance offerings.

Officials with the Capitol say the new system’s reliability restores the Capitol’s viability as a venue for smaller events that a facility as large as SKyPAC might not be suited to host.

This is truly wonderful news for the Capitol, whose ability to continue a decadeslong tradition of entertainment is now enhanced.

It was exciting to learn from officials at the Capitol that SKyPAC will soon announce a series of movie screenings that will focus on family films and documentaries.

The fixing of the HVAC and roof, we hope, will, once again, help make the Capitol a place where people will want to go and see movies of their choice.

We believe the Capitol and SKyPAC can both exist in our city. That is our hope and we look forward to the marquee being on at the Capitol with the names of movies for people to come watch in the coming months.

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