One Southern Tier theater is racing to close the digital divide. As 35-millimeter film begins to get phased out, the Cinema Saver Theater needs to make the switch. Our Elyse Mickalonis takes us to a special party held on Sunday, part of their Dollars for Digital initiative.
ENDICOTT, N.Y. -- The Cinema Saver theater in Endicott celebrated something special on Sunday.
“Today’s Halloween Party is our very first event we’re holding to raise money for Dollars for Digital,” said Rachel Daddezio, an employee.
Cinema Saver in Endicott hosted a Halloween Party fundraiser for new technology: digital theater equipment.
“Film is going to be phased out sometime before next summer. Once it’s phased out, our equipment will no longer be useful to us. So we’ll need to invest in digital equipment,” explained Daddezio.
Amber Earle, Cinema Saver owner, added, “The image is going to be perfect every single time, the sound is going to be perfect, and we can program all the times.”
But, switching from film to digital is a pricey process. In order to turn all five screens digital, the theater needs to raise about $300,000, which is where Sunday’s fundraising comes in. For $5, visitors were granted admission to movies, food, a fun house, and a haunted house. Kids also enjoyed games and making ceramic pumpkins.
“If we make enough money to do all five we’ll be thrilled, if we make enough money to do two we’re going to start with two, so that money will be used even if we don’t reach our whole goal,” noted Earle.
People here said they’ve already started receiving donations from community members and are thrilled to work in a place where they can really connect with customers.
“I love this job. Our customers are so loyal and so appreciative to be able to only pay $2 for a movie, and popcorn or soda is half of what the big people charge. They’re so happy to have that option,” said Earle.
If you couldn’t make it out to the Halloween Party on Sunday, but would like to make a donation, just head to www.cinemasaver.com.