The old seats are scheduled to be removed in May 2015. Goddard says "They've done us well, but they've reached the end of their useful life." 
(Photo: Joshua Akkerman, WJON)

ST. CLOUD - After 66 years of use, 16 of which were at the Paramount Theatre, the seats are ready to retire. Last year saw 45,000 tickets sold, so the seats got a lot of use. Paramount Theatre Executive Director Tony Goddard says the seats are so old that the manufacturer no longer makes parts for them. Aligned with St. Cloud they started a new campaign to raise money for new seats.

"It's called Take Your Seat For Act II," says Goddard, "In addition for the satisfaction of keeping this lovely building at its best, you get your name on the seat, and as long as we keep those seats, your name will be there for every patron that sits in that seat. It'll be a small plaque on the arm rest." 

The cost is $400 for one seat, $700 for two seats, and $1,000 for four seats. Goddard says you'll get a lot of recognition because the new seats will last a long time.

A bonus of getting new seats is there will be more seats in the Paramount Theatre. Currently there are 714 seats. After the new seats go in there will be about 800, however, Goddard says having more seats doesn't mean they will be smaller.

They'll actually be bigger. It has to do with the design, and the spacing of the seats. Actually it will be more comfortable.

The total cost is estimated to be between $350,000 and $400,000. Goddard says St. Cloud will be paying for half of the total cost, while the new campaign is raising money for the other half. So far they campaign is about 26% of the way done, having raised around $52,000.

The new seats are scheduled to start being put in next May.

After 16 years of use the Paramount Seats are set to retire.
(Photo: Joshua Akkerman, WJON)