Rochelle's Hub theater to get a new life.
Susan Tyler; Townsquaremedia

A year ago last July, I shared that the Hub Theater in Rochelle was going to be turned into a performing arts building, well pans have changed and many are not happy with what's going in to the historic building. A distillery.

Back in June of this year, WRHL reports, the city of Rochelle approved a measure in selling the old movie house to Richard Kennay of Ashton. The former theater will become known as the "Box Office Distillery."  The plan is "to make and distribute Vodka, Whiskey, along with Gin" at the facility, along with having space available for "banquets, meeting rooms, and even show movies at the theater."

Although, I'm sad that the old 1931 building will no longer be used for entertainment of the arts with movies, plays, and performances as was promised.I think it's an interesting concept in turning the space into a micro-distillery.

However, I might be in the minority with that opinion as many have voiced their opinion of being against such a plan for the downtown area.

According to The Hub Theater's Facebook page there is a lot of opposition over the city's dealings with the theater.

I can understand the anger and disappointment over the change, however, I can also see this as a good thing for the city.

One, the theater will not be torn down or fall into disrepair, it's going to be used the company representative, Aubrey Kennay, has said that it's "important to keep the integrity of the Hub Theater".

Two, it will attract tourists to the city. With the boom of micro-breweries, winery's and distillery's spreading across the country this will bring in money to the city.

Three, the building can still be  used for banquets and events, and even movies. So maybe it's not going to be used like it was originally built for, but the fact remains it's going to be used and it's not going to sit and rot away.

To me I think that makes this a good thing for the Hub City. Change is inevitable and sometimes we don't always like it but in the end things will work out one way or another.



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