The Vogue Theatre: An Integral Piece of Manistee's Rich History
Once billed as "one of the most modern theaters in the State of Michigan," the Vogue Theatre has been renovated to become the beautiful landmark that so many Manistee residents remember. In February 2011, filmmaker Michael Moore came to Manistee with his vision for the Vogue... that its marquee lights would illuminate the downtown region and bring hundreds of people to shop, eat, and enjoy Manistee.
A generous $50,000 donation for the Vogue's restoration was received, as well as $10,000 from Michael Moore and a $500,000 grant from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.
A full opening was held December 21, 2013 with films shown during the weekend preceding Christmas. In May 2014, final construction to the permanent screen in the main auditorium was begun. This included: custom-fitting of audio equipment, framing and installation of the screen itself, installation of a micro-perf screen in the Oleson Family Theater, installation of a heavy weight suede waterfall curtain in the Pure Michigan Theater and motorized masking curtains in both auditoriums.
History of the Vogue Theatre
It was 1938, and the effects of the Great Depression had hit Manistee hard. Film, then a new art form, was emerging as a popular distraction for Americans. After five years of planning, the Vogue Theatre opened to the public on January 12, 1938.
For the next 47 years, the Vogue entertained audiences with Hollywood films, but due to rising costs and declining community interest, the lights dimmed and the Vogue was closed. It was sold and reopened in 1985 as a two-screen theater. For various reasons, the Vogue Theatre closed two more times in 1995 and 2005... and seemed to close for good in 2008.
The Manistee Downtown Development Authority then purchased the Vogue in 2010 for $65,000... and because of Michael Moore's enthusiasm and vision, the restoration project began. Actor John C. Reilly, who has a home in Ludington, performed with his band in June 2013 at the Vogue to begin the final fundraising stage.
Support the Vogue with a Donation, Becoming a Member, or Volunteering
The Vogue Theatre restoration is the largest volunteer-led initiative in the history of Manistee. Over 650 people and organizations have financially made a donation, with more than $2 million raised.
The Vogue Theatre thanks all of its donors as well as the Manistee County Community Foundation for assisting in the donation process. The Manistee County Community Foundation, a 501c(3) nonprofit organization, is serving as the fiduciary for this campaign and is accepting donations in support of the Vogue’s ongoing operations, including keeping prices low and supporting the many free and low-cost community programs and events that they put on regularly. Click here for more donation information.
You can also show support by becoming a member of The Vogue Theatre! Not only will you be making a contribution to assist with the Vogue’s ongoing operations, but as a member you will receive discounts on movie tickets! Click here to download the membership brochure.
The Vogue Theatre is a unique venue to volunteer some of your time and work in a fun atmosphere with great people. For volunteer information, visit their website.
For more information about the Vogue Theatre, showing times, and online ticket ordering:
Schedule Hotline: 231-508-8005
PO Box 291
383 River St.
Manistee, MI 49660
For more activities & attractions, check out these additional links for Things to Do in West Michigan:
Ludington Activities & Things to Do -- Play on a beautiful beach, take a tour at Historic White Pine Village, or explore the barn quilt trail, murals or sculptures in the county--Ludington offers many fun things to do for the entire family!
Have Fun in Manistee, Michigan -- Explore Manistee's historic downtown district and riverwalk, hike the Manistee National Forest, canoe on the Manistee River, and more.
Hamlin Lake -- Just 4 miles north of Ludington, Hamlin Lake is a great destination for boating, fishing and climbing dunes! The Hamlin Lake shoreline is also part of the Ludington State Park.
Silver Lake Sand Dunes -- Visiting the Silver Lake Sand Dunes makes for a terrific vacation because you can take your off-road vehicle for a spin on the scenic sand dunes overlooking Lake Michigan and Silver Lake.
Things to Do in Pentwater, Michigan -- Nothing is quite like the quaint, artsy, harbortown village of Pentwater. Don't miss the popular Charles Mears State Park beach on Pentwater's Lake Michigan shoreline.
Lots of Activities in Scottville, Michigan -- Explore the Riverside Park along the National Scenic Pere Marquette River.
Canoeing or Fishing on the Pere Marquette River -- Many boat liveries offer canoe rentals.
Also, check out West Michigan Guides and our locally produced WestMichigan.MichBiz.com directory for our largest lists of Things to Do in West Michigan.