Petrolia officials plan to meet with community groups to talk about renting Victoria Hall.
Over the past few years, a number of groups have expressed concern about the lack of dates and even the cost of using the theatre. M.B. Wilson, who organized concerts on behalf of the Petrolia Lions voiced concern last year after being told he would not be able to bring tribute shows to Victoria Hall because they might draw from Victoria Playhouse Petrolia’s audience. Wilson and the town officials were able to sit down and work out two concert dates including this weekend’s appearance of The Mudmen.
Petrolia Community Theatre President Carol Graham also expressed concern the theatre was unable to stage a Christmas-themed play because the only fall dates the group could get were in mid-November.
And Councillor Mary Pat Gleeson most recently expressed concern about how few groups are using the hall saying Victoria Hall was meant to be a community hall.
She had heard from one local group who moved an event to another municipality because using Victoria Hall would cost about $1,500 in rent plus ticket sale fees.
In a report to council, Director of Cultural Services, Richard Poore, says two staff plan to meet with user groups to “provide feedback and input to the current practices applied when renting space at Victoria Hall.”
Poore says current users as well as those have used the hall in the past will be invited including Petrolia Community Theatre, the Lambton Young Theatre, service clubs, elementary schools, LCCVI – which uses the hall twice each year – Tourism Sarnia Lambton, the local chamber of commerce and the Lambton Concert Band that used to perform in Petrolia but now performs in Sarnia.
The meeting is slated for April 13.