MARQUETTE — When you think of Donckers you usually think of sweet treats. The owners are giving the city of Marquette its sweetest treat yet. They are the driving force behind The Delft Theater Restoration Project. The downtown Icon will stand proud once again, $481,000 was presented today to get the ball rolling on the Delft Theater Restoration Project. The Michigan Economic Development Corporation presented the good news, the state grant includes improvements to the interior and exterior of the building.
Community Assistant Team Specialist for the Michigan Economic Development Development Corporation excitedly explains what’s in store for the project, “Oh a bunch of goodies , it will be rehabilitated into a dinner theater, so they will keep some of the theater components. I believe outdoor seating will also be a factor in the project and part of the end use, so we are very excited to see this part of Washington St. reactivated.”
“Oh, there is a lot of history to it, Fred Donckers built it in 1914 for his business and rented it to the Delft Theater. Fred who built the building next door in 1909 built this one. They rebuilt it in 1918 and built the big theater behind it. We are just going to restore the front and side here are 139 West Washington. Should be a pretty cool venue actually, a 100 year old venue that is restored,” said Co–owner Tom Vear, Donckers/Delft Theater Restoration Project.
“It’s been kind of run down for a while now I think it will be cool to renovate it and get it back up. This is the main part of downtown Marquette so it will definitely bring more life to the street,” said resident Dan Morris.
The entire project will cost about 1.8 million dollars and should be completed by the end of summer. The project will also add about 25 new jobs.