Board of Directors

History of Hardacre Theater Preservation Association

The Creation of the Hardacre Theater Preservation Association

Recognizing the need to preserve and promote the performing arts in Cedar County, a group of concerned citizens banded together with the intent of taking over the operation of the Hardacre Theater.  At the time, the theater’s future as an operational movie theater was in question and the possibility of it closing down was quickly becoming very real.

The founding members of the Association recognized the benefit to the surrounding communities and local businesses of keeping the theater operational.  Hence, the idea of the Hardacre Theater Preservation Association (HTPA) was investigated and subsequently formed.

Organizational History

An unincorporated, non-profit association was established in 2012 working closely with and through the Community Foundation of the Great River Bend Corporation.  The latter being a qualified 501(c)3 non-profit organization.

The first governing Board of Directors for the HTPA was appointed on May 8, 2012.  The current structure includes the Board of Directors, advisors, and ad hoc committees to assist in furthering the goals and objectives of the Association.

First Elected Board of Directors

  • Greg Brown, President
  • Don Young, Vice President
  • Shellby Wiskus, Treasurer
  • Maureen Bowie, Secretary
  • Will Valet
  • David Tripp
  • Betty Lett
  • Stuart Clark
  • Scott Sanborn

A qualified 501(c)3 nonprofit association was established in October 2013.

Current Board of Directors

Board President, CEO

Why is this cause important to you?

The Hardacre Theater has a rich history and it helps to define who we are as a community.  It has been a memorable part in the lives of several generations.  It’s clear that the Hardacre is not just a local landmark. It’s a home to many cherished memories and rites of passage for generations of people. The building has been witness to a lot of good times and bad times in our society and community.  This part of our history needs to be preserved.  Without this preservation effort, the building, and all it stands for, will be lost forever.  Imagine driving down Fifth Street and instead of seeing the iconic neon marquee and building, there sits an empty lot. So, please join us in our efforts to restore/renovate this iconic building!

Board Vice President

How did you come to be on the Board of the HTPA?

The Hardacre Theater was a big draw in our decision to make Tipton our home. I volunteered for the Board in the interest of keeping such a great asset to our community.

Why is this cause important to you?

I direct the Hardacre Film Festival, and having a movie palace as our venue is very important to the festival's overall experience. Even more than that, the Hardacre is a regular destination for my children and family. We're all movie fans, and not having to drive 20 to 30 miles to see new movies is a great advantage to living in Tipton.

Hobbies and interests

Good movies, live music, attending Hawkeye sports events, NFL, cooking, photography, beer brewing.

Other community involvement

I direct the Hardacre Film Festival when I'm not raising four children with my wife, Callie, and supporting local sports teams.

Board Treasurer

How did you come to be on the Board of the HTPA?

I volunteered to be on this board when former Community Development Director, Scott Sanborn shared his vision for the Hardacre Theater at a Chamber meeting one afternoon.  Currently I serve as Treasurer for the HTPA.

Why is this cause important to you?

Going to the theater to see a movie is a “simple” pleasure, a place where family and friends can enjoy “quality”  time or where one can go alone for “me” time.  It fits all sizes and all age ranges.  You can always count on popcorn and sweet treats.  And how convenient that we have one in our very own town! This simple pleasure has been going on for decades and I don’t see it fading away anytime soon.  For these reasons I have a passion for retaining the history of this building and preserving its beauty inside and out.  I want this “simple” pleasure to be here in our town for the generations to come.

Hobbies and interests

I like to be outdoors whenever I can, often doing whatever I can to have an excuse to stay out longer.  I love to ride the motorcycle with my husband, taking trips to Wisconsin to see my granddaughters, reading a good book on a cold snowy day and taking in a movie with my friends.

Other community involvement

I served on the Tipton School Foundation board as Treasurer for several years.  Currently I serve on the boards of the Tipton Chamber of Commerce and the Tipton Development Commission and now the Hardacre Theater Preservation Association.

Anything else you would like to share?

I have lived in Tipton all of my life and raised our two children in this community as well.  I have worked for the Cedar County Coop in accounting for over 30 years. I love this community and what it has to offer and want to continue to watch it prosper.

Board Secretary

How did you come to be on the Board of the HTPA?

I’ve worked with Greg for 5 or 6 years as "sound guy" for the FUMC Praise Band.  His excitement and commitment to keeping the Hardacre going convinced me that joining the board and helping the cause was well worth it!.

Why is this cause important to you?

I have been active in theater off and on since high school (thespian troupe 69!) and after a long absence to begin a family, I decided it was time to get involved again.  Since coming to Tipton in 1996, I’ve come to love the small town atmosphere and have been impressed with the community support of the arts.  Having a permanent place for a community theater to call home, as well as a movie theater and a place to host musical events is a great thing for such a small community.  Giving some of my time to help this become a reality is a way for me to give back to Tipton.

Hobbies and interests

I enjoy reading both fiction and non-fiction and watching movies and TV.  I also enjoy anything computer or network related..

Other community involvement

I’m currently serving as Children’s Ministry co-coordinator at the United Methodist Church, and also do a lot work as “technical director” for the church (computer and audio/video support).

Anything else you would like to share?

I’ve helped with the Tour of Lights community concert for the last few years, and one of the neatest things about doing that for me, is going from an empty stage to live music in a few hours.  It reminds me of the old TV shows and movies where someone says "Hey gang!  Let’s put on a show!" It’s pretty exciting to be part of a group of people who can "put on a show” like that.

Director

While not a Tipton "native" my family was drawn to Tipton in 1999 by all of the things it had to offer for a town its size.  The theater was one of those wonderful assets for young and "not-so-young" to utilize.  My kids loved being able to walk uptown to a movie by themselves!  Fine arts are such a gift to the community and deserve a place like the Hardacre to share these talents with everyone! Having the Hardacre restored will keep Tipton's downtown vibrant as it will benefit other businesses as well.