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Voters OK Park Theatre restoration
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The Park Theater sign will once again illuminate the nights in downtown McMinnville as city voters approved a measure that will restore the historic building at a cost of nearly $2 million.Meanwhile, things will be blue just a block away at the Blue Building as voters rejected a measure that would restore the historic building at a price tag of up to $6 million.While not carrying every precinct, the Park Theatre restoration movement did get “Yes” votes from 57 percent of McMinnville voters, winning 2,008 to 1,512. Meanwhile, its older cousin just a stone’s throw away never even got close as 60 percent of McMinnville residents said “No” to the idea and defeated Blue Building restoration by a count of 2,083 to 1,368 votes.The push for a taxpayer-backed restoration of the Park Theatre on Main Street began almost from the announcement the measure would be placed on the November ballot. An organized grassroots campaign with signs and commercials pushed the plan for most of the campaign year.However, there was no such fanfare for the Blue Building as city fathers placed it on the ballot in hopes of getting feedback on what McMinnville taxpayers felt about restoring the old building for public use.