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Poncan Theatre Reopened Following Improvements


The Poncan Theatre hosted its first event of 2019 last weekend after completing new improvements to the facility. Poncan Theatre Board of Directors President Allen Hardesty said that he has been fielding inquiries about when the theatre would reopen. With all of the renovation work completed, musical act Five Sax performed on Saturday as a part of the Ponca City Concert Series.

Hardesty said one of the biggest improvements for those who go to the Poncan is that there will be new bathrooms. The old restroom facility was converted into a women’s bathroom and a new men’s room was constructed at the west end of the lobby. The construction crews knocked down the wall dividing what had been two separate bathrooms to create the newly remodeled women’s room, effectively doubling the size of restrooms for both genders.

The first visible change is the new electric marque in front of the theatre at 104 East Grand. Other interior aspects of the 92-year-old building received face-lifts as well. Hardesty said that the theatre has a newly installed $20,000 air conditioning system, an improved handicap seating area and renovated dressing rooms for performers.

The dressing rooms, located under the stage, are not usually thought of or seen by the majority of those who visit the Poncan, but have been known among other performers for their adequate accommodations. Hardesty said those acts will find the improved dressing area, with four dressing rooms and two bathrooms even more comfortable. The dressing room also features many of the comforts of home, including a refrigerator and lounge area.

The Poncan Theatre has spent several months raising funds for the recent improvements. Hardesty said the board has a long-term improvement plan with 3- and 5-year objectives. Part of that plan includes replacing the nearly 760 aging seats in the next three years.