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Rivoli grateful for state funding

Brad Williams

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La Crosse’s most famous old movie house is shut down for now, waiting for a break from the pandemic. 

The Rivoli just got a $43,859.65.financial shot-in-the-arm from Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers this week, as 54 grants worth $10 million went to theaters throughout the state.

The funding was part of the COVID-19 Theater Grant Program.

Rivoli manager Sam De Merit is hopeful to get back to showing movies, including crowd-pleasing blockbusters, such as the Avengers series.

De Merit said a shortage of new movies quickly ended a brief reopening of the Rivoli earlier this year. 

He added that customers can still shop with the Rivoli online, to buy gift cards for Christmas. There is no limit and they will not expire.

The Marcus Cinema on Ward Avenue is included in a $4,020,467.84 boost for that statewide chain of 24 theaters.

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.