■ Susan Carrier / Contributed
The new year started with quite a big mess at the Historic Hemet Theatre, but the mess was definitely expected. For the second year, the theatre hosted a showing of “Rocky Horror Picture Show” on New Year’s Eve, and as part of the show, the audience showered the theatre with confetti, decks of cards and nearly 200 rolls of toilet paper! It’s all part of the fun with the 1975 cult classic musical that has fans dancing in the aisles…. “It’s just a jump to the left… and then a step to the right…”
The show closes out a year that has seen the old movie house blossom into a dynamic piece of the downtown community. Word of mouth continues to spread on the great entertainment, friendly audiences and welcoming volunteers working to bring the venue back to life.
During 2016, HHT hosted more than 150 events, including concerts, movies, educational programs and fundraisers for local nonprofits. Several local schools used the venue for their graduation ceremonies or Christmas program. More than 100 volunteers staffed the events, distributed promotional materials or helped clean and maintain the facility.
Again this year, the “Tribute Mania” Concert Series will be the main revenue source for the Foundation and ticket sales are already very strong. The first six concerts in the series are:
Saturday Jan. 21 — Tribute to Queen by Queen Nation
Saturday Feb. 11 — Tribute to Neil Diamond with Dean Colley and Hot August Nights
Saturday March 4 — Tribute to The Eagles featuring Desperado
Saturday April 8 — Tribute to The Beatles with Britain’s Finest
Saturday April 29 — Tribute to The Rolling Stones featuring The Ultimate Stones
Saturday May 13 – Tribute to The Doobie Brothers by Doobie, Inc.
Tickets for Tribute Mania concerts are $22 presale and $25 day of show. All shows have a 7 p.m. start time.
Special events planned for 2017 include the Riverside County History Symposium in March and a return of the Leadercast conference in May.
Event tickets are available online at www.PurplePass.com or at the theatre ticket office. Ticket Office hours are Monday thru Friday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tickets are also available at the Downtown Deli, 113 N. Harvard St,. and the Harvard Street Music Exchange, 134 S. Harvard St.
Information on all theatre events is available at www.HistoricHemetTheatre.com or by calling the ticket office, (951) 658-5950. A weekly email blast of upcoming events is available by enrolling on the website.