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Source: Darla Moore
The Broadway Theatre was purchased from Mr. Carnahan and the other gentleman in the late 1920's or early 30's by Mr. Lee Ward and his brother, Mr. Theo Ward. At the time it was the last vaudeville house in outstate Michigan and did vaudeville 4 nights a week and silent movies 3 nights a week. Lee Ward's wife, Louise, played piano for the silent movies. I'm not sure at what point Lee Ward became sole owner or the circumstances.
I married Lee's son, Kent, in 1971 and we purchased the theatres after the death of Lee in 1977 or 78. The Broadway, with it's balcony, could seat over 625 patrons. There is actually a full stage behind the screen and there is a dressing area under the stage. While Kent and I owned the theatre we occasionally presented a live entertainment show. Two that I remember were The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and Cheech & Chong. In 1986 Kent and I had to file bankruptcy and the theatres reverted to the estate and were eventually sold to the Loeck's organization.
The Loeck's maintained them as theatres until they built a larger multiplex in Mt. Pleasant and a group from Mt. Pleasant organized as Friends of the Broadway, name may not be exact, and they purchased the Broadway for a community theatre and meeting place. Because the Loeck's organization installed automated projection on the lower level instead of in the projection booth above the balcony the seating capacity was lowered to just over 400 seats.