Modesto dance group has to move show from Gallo Center, but other events still on

mrowland@modbee.comJune 12, 2014 

The show will go on at the Gallo Center for the Arts, even as cleanup continues from a weekend water leak.

Gallo Center CEO Lynn Dickerson said she expects all the shows for the weekend of June 20 to continue as scheduled. They will be the first events staged at the venue since a pipe leading to a second-floor ice machine burst Sunday, causing major damage to the lobby areas.

“As it stands right now, we believe all the shows from the 20th on will stand as scheduled,” Dickerson said. “It will be a ‘Pardon our construction’ thing for them. But hopefully most patrons will understand, and most people have been here before (and)know that we don’t normally look like this. But we felt it was the right thing to do to have the shows not close because we maybe didn’t look so pretty.”

The events that weekend will be a lecture by “Proof of Heaven” author Dr. Eben Alexander on June 20, “Mind of Mencia” comic Carlos Mencia on June 21 and the Modesto Performing Arts première of “Man of La Mancha” on June 21. The concession stands will be closed for upcoming performances, as will the coat check room. Limited concessions will be sold in the front of the lobby, where a temporary box office has been set up.

The water damage did force the center to move the production by The Dance Academy this weekend. The Modesto dance school had rented the 1,250-seat Mary Stuart Rogers Theater for two shows Saturday. The “Happy Birthday” performances now will be held at noon and 7 p.m. in the Downey High School auditorium. Current tickets will be honored at the new location.

Cost estimates to repair the damage at the Gallo Center are not available yet, Dickerson said. The water, which ran unnoticed for a full day, soaked the ceilings, walls and flooring on the first- and second-floor lobbies before being turned off Monday morning. Both theaters were spared major damage, as were the center’s electrical system and elevators.

Dickerson said staff has been able to move forward quickly with repairs, thanks to the Stanislaus County Board of Supervisors voting to approve an emergency repairs contract at its Tuesday meeting. The county owns the building, while the nonprofit Gallo Center for the Arts runs all its operations and day-to-day management and is responsible for all operational costs.

Dickerson said crews still are in the first phase of the process, which is demolition and drying. The drywall and carpeting are being removed from all the saturated areas. That phase is expected to last until June 19, and then the second phase, restoration, will begin the next day. Dickerson said it is unclear how long it will take to fix everything. The carpet, large sections of sheetrock and paint will need to be replaced.

Officials are working with insurers for Stanislaus County and the Gallo Center to pay for the repairs. Dickerson said she is grateful to partner with the county during the process.

“It’s been phenomenal, they know how to do this. They are in the business of project management,” Dickerson said. “It is impressive how much has been done since this all happened Monday morning. At least this happened toward the end of our season and not, say, the night before we had John Legend.”

Bee staff writer Ken Carlson contributed to this report. Bee staff writer Marijke Rowland can be reached at mrowland@modbee.com or (209) 578-2284. Follow her on Twitter @marijkerowland.

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