By Steve Hansen
QCS Managing Editor
After four months of remodeling and restoration, Tucumcari’s Odeon Theater re-opened Friday.
A sellout crowd saw the Disney animated epic “Frozen,” spread onto a dazzling state-of-the-art white screen by a state-of-the-art digital projector.
The Odeon is now the only theater in an area that includes about 9,000 people from Guadalupe and Quay counties, according to Christie Dominguez, who, along with Robert Lopez, owns the theater. That’s from Santa Rosa to Vega, Texas, east and west; Clayton to Clovis, north and south.
In the past four months, Dominguez said, the theater has been thoroughly repainted, its seats reupholstered and restrooms renovated. In some rows, wider seats and more legroom will accommodate customers who need them, she said. There is also a new space to accommodate wheelchair-bound moviegoers.
In addition, the theater now has a Dolby 7.1 speaker system, which separates the sound into seven channels and feeds it into 14 speakers along the theater walls. That system replaces a single speaker that had been delivering the audio since 1956, Dominguez said.
Special drapery and carpeting on the walls further regulate sound projection. And the roof won’t leak, Dominguez added.
While there is more work to be done, Dominguez said, the technologically updated theater can deliver “an experience, not just a movie.”
Future work on the theater includes new balcony seats and remodeling in the concession area. In addition, Dominguez said, the projector will be modified to enable theater-size screenings of Blu-ray disks and even video games on disk for special events.
While Dominguez and Lopez were unsuccessful in applying for a theater restoration grant, their renovation efforts do not go unappreciated.
“We at MainStreet are very appreciative of their willingness to step up and do this,” said Mark Lake, director of Tucumcari MainStreet of Dominguez and Lopez. “Further, they’ve done an amazing job.”
Patsy Gresham, executive director of the Tucumcari/Quay County Chamber of Commerce said, “The preservation and restoration of the Odeon Theater is a huge benefit to our business environment. Our residents young and old now have another place to go for entertainment and enjoyment.”