Updated: Apr 27, 2020
2018 Best Historic Rehabilitation Project
In 1941 the Reeves Theater, located at 129 West Main Street, opened as a state-of-the-art cinema. Remodeled and renamed the Elk Twin in the 1970s the theater operated until 1994 A badly leaking roof virtually destroyed the interior and caused the theater to close. Over the next twenty years, various actions were taken to stabilize the building and prevent further decay and potential demolition. In 2013 Historic Reeves, LLC, purchased the building and re-envisioned it as an operating live music venue with a front of the house café serving farm-to-table dishes and North Carolina beers and wine.
The theater’s Art Deco blue porcelain façade was meticulously restored, and the missing vertical sign and front doors were replicated based on historic photos. Original mosaic tiles line the lobby entrance. The 250-seat theater is filled every Friday and Saturday night for live music and there are numerous weeknight activities and events that bring patrons to Main Street. The theater has been recognized by UNC television and by the Winston-Salem Journal as their number one pick for weekend entertainment.
The $1.1 million project was funded through private investment, advance box seat sales, and a Main Street Solutions Fund grant. The Reeves created 15 full-time and part-time jobs and the tax value of the building increased by 1,000% Five nearby building façades have been renovated and five new businesses have opened as a direct result of the Reeves Theater opening its doors.