The Historic Fox Theatre in Newton, Kansas has been a mainstay of the Newton community for more than 100 years. It has been through several remodels and name changes. The latest incarnation is the work of The Gathering, a church with a community focus. Several years ago the church purchased the theater with the intent of using it for worship services yet continue its use as a community movie theater. Extensive renovations are forthcoming but some of the work has already begun. The last full renovation was completed in the 1950's. The exterior will maintain that character but the interior will harken back to several decades earlier. There will be new seating in the theater with new projectors, screens for worship services and for first-run movies. There are new restrooms, gathering spaces, church offices and classrooms. The second floor will feature a 1950's inspired soda fountain with a lounge area, a kitchen and views to the first floor concessions stand. The remainder of the second floor will house offices and classrooms.
The Gathering, as mentioned above, is playing a leadership role in the revitalization of the Newton community. Not only do they want to see the people of Newton reborn into the church but they want to see the community at large experience a rebirth. In that effort they have begun a campaign called Newton Reborn. As part of the revitalization The Gathering is planning to bring a craft beer/hamburger restaurant to the downtown area.