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Schwartz Center for the Arts to shut its doors

Courtesy The Schwartz Center for the Arts

Citing looming state funding cuts to the arts and overwhelming overhead costs, the board of the Schwartz Center announced it will close the theater June 30.

In a release, Board President Tracey Miller said “the theater has done well this year, but has run out of money and time.”

"I believe this is a huge loss for the community as well as the state. It is my hope that someone or some entity finds it important enough to support the arts, culture and entertainment needs of the city and steps up to reopen the center."

Kent County Tourism Executive Director Wendie Vestfall said The Schwartz will be missed. "They were kind of a centerpiece for the downtown Dover area providing really good arts and entertainment programming for people of all ages. They worked with us on Dover Days and other events that we put on."

The Schwartz has been a historical landmark in Dover for over a century, but has closed its doors before.

The space operated primarily as a movie theater until 1982, when it was shuttered until a grand reopening in 2001.

The theater is jointly owned by Delaware State University and Wesley College.

One DSU official said the fate of the theater is unknown.

Delaware Public Media' s arts coverage is made possible, in part, by support from theDelaware Division of the Arts, a state agency dedicated to nurturing and supporting the arts in Delaware, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts.