Observations all along the line - Kimball & the Southern Panhandle First

Potter Unveils Tin-Roof District

A Nebraska Arts Council creative district is in the works for the community of Potter. The announcement came at a Town Hall meeting on Tuesday evening.

Over 50 people attended the meeting, with two items on the agenda – a creative district and the American Legion Hall plans and finances.

In Nebraska, six communities have been designated creative districts: North Platte, Benson, Ashland, Cozad, Norfork, and Brownville. Sidney is also applying for this economic driver.

Voting by the group confirmed that Potter's Creative District will be known as the Tin-Roof District and will encompass the downtown area. The downtown area has murals, stained glass windows, numerous tin roofs, mosaics, the Sundry, the Duck Pin bowling alley, Hangar 39, Collective Gathering, and the Visitor's Center.

Initially, the program will receive $5,000, then after certification, the district will be awarded $10,000, and eventually they will be open to receive grants of up to $250,000.

According to the guidelines, the district must have visual arts, and creative businesses, be walkable, and have an economic purpose. Two forms of marketing are necessary for full compliance. The newly formed creative district group handed out surveys and asked for input from the very young to the old.

The other item on the Town Hall meeting agenda was the renovation of the American Legion building, which is now owned by the village of Potter. It was turned over to the village in the hopes of finding more grant money. The Legion couldn't qualify because it is based on membership.

Originally built as a theater in 1917-1918, the American Legion purchased the building, and members of the community have used it. In recent years, the Legion has been the home to the Potter Melodramas, dinner theaters, and the Kid's Theater.

Hal Enevoldsen reviewed work completed on the building in the last few years, starting with the tuck point project, replacing the curtains, repair roof damage, ticket booth construction, replace trusses, and build a round stage.

Future improvements are a kitchen, windows, handicapped bathrooms, and a lobby. The possibility of a bond issue to help fund the Legion improvements is being discussed although no action was taken at the Town Hall meeting.