ST. CLOUD (WJON News) -- Downtown St. Cloud continues to grow as an arts and entertainment district.

A Twin Cities-based theater company has bought the former Black Box Theater space at 804 West St. Germain Street and is planning a full schedule of events.

Bubba Hollenhorst is the Creative Director of Gnarly Bard Theater. They've been doing original one-act musical theater productions since 2019 but now with a space to call their own, they can grow and become more diverse.

The goal is four or five theater shows and then a bunch of live music events per season, which we plan to start in September.  Next year we'll have a full docket of shows.

He says they are doing an open house event the weekend of the Bold & Bright Festival in January.

On January 26th we're going to have a live Jazz trio as well as an oil painter showing some work and selling some art.

On January 27th The Fred Savage and the Unbeatables band will be playing.

He says having grown up in St. Cloud during the era of the Java Joint he also wants the space to be the hub of a lot of live music.

I know there are some nice venues in town but most of them are in bars.  The idea is to have a space just to put on music and have that be the focus.  A big goal of ours is to have local band nights and some all ages nights.

Hollenhorst says he wants local musicians to use the space as well as bring up some bands from the Twin Cities.

They also built a second stage in the lobby area for smaller open mic nights and poetry nights.

For live band nights, they'll be able to seat about 200 people and for the theater shows it seats about 75.

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Hollenhorst says they'll have some live bands this spring as well as possibly rent out the space to other theater companies.

They are working with the city to get a liquor license for their concession stand.

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