History of the Theatre
The Fair Theatre originally opened as a silent movie house in 1925. Since that time, it has undergone many a transformation, from a popular movie house, to a vaudeville showcase, to an empty shuttered building, to the jewel in the crown of downtown Plainview.
A City Investment
In an effort to promote tourism and recapture a bit of historic grandeur reminiscent of downtown’s glory days, the City of Plainview purchased the building in 1994. It was purchased with hotel / motel taxes. Those tax funds, which are based on room receipts and taxable revenues of local lodging establishments, are restricted and can only be used to promote tourism and conventions.
A $250,000 restoration followed the purchase. Grants, fundraisers, and donations helped to pay for stage curtains, lighting systems, sound systems, central heat and air, and other necessities. The restoration was made possible in large part thanks to free craftsman labor provided by prisoners from the local Wheeler Formby Unit. Though the restoration took about 18 months, the glitter and glow of the theatre’s present persona seems as if it has always been there. The theatre stands three stories tall and sports a split balcony. It seats 421 on the main floor and another 110 upstairs.
The Fair Theatre was reopened in October 1999 and has since that time re-established itself in the cultural fabric of Plainview.
If you have any questions or would like more information, please contact the Fair Theatre's business office at (806) 296-1139.