Grand Theatre Center For The Arts

715 Central Avenue
Tracy, CA 95376

209-831-6858

The Grand Theatre opened on August 11, 1923 as a premiere vaudeville half-house in the area. Conceived and built by German-born entrepreneur John C. Droge, the theatre was converted to show “talkies” by the late 1920’s.

The facility received a major remodel during its heyday in 1941, garnered with bold new art deco features and a sculptural marquee. It functioned as an eclectic movie house with occasional live performances until 1977. As of today, three generations of our community have enjoyed and experienced entertainment and fine art at the facility. Droge’s imprints are still felt across the block at Central Avenue and 7th St as the Grand Theatre Center for the Arts. He operated a corner store in what is now the South Gallery, built the Shamrock and American Hotels now housing Arts Education Studios, principally invested in the Bank of Tracy where the Entry Gallery and Loggia resides, and his crown jewel of Tracy – the Grand Theatre, has been historically renovated to once again offer live performances of all kinds as well as multi-media presentations and cinema.

The Grand is an amazing facility due its thoughtful development as a professional arts organization and educative center within City goverment, as well as an important public resource as an economic redevelopment project in downtown Tracy. Hundreds of community leaders, arts patrons, educators and parents contributed to the planning process that ultimately designed the amenities and programming of the Center.

This municipal interdisciplinary arts center is the only one of its kind in the state of California offering professional and community-based fine arts programming through arts education, exhibitions, and performances of all kinds, and is one of only a handful of similar facilities in America.

The 37,000+ square foot facility opened in September of 2007 and is celebrating its 5th Anniversary 2011-12 Season. The Center is owned and operated by the City of Tracy and managed by the Cultural Arts Division in the City Manager’s Office.

The Grand Foundation is a private 501.(C)3 fundraising and community partner of the facility. The Grand has been honored with awards fromThe California Heritage Council and the California Preservation Foundation and has been acknowledged in the State Legislature and U.S. Congress. The Center was recognized as one of fifty unique and important cultural redevelopment projects being studied in 2010. The information gained from this research project will assist in the development of new art and cultural centers across America.

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