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Turlock Community Theatre to launch comeback with help of federal grant
Turlock Community Theatre
The Turlock Community Theatre can open its doors once again thanks to a federal COVID grant (Photo contributed).

It was announced this week that the Turlock Community Theatre was one of six venues throughout the Central Valley to receive federal COVID funding in order to help keep its doors open.

After pushing the Biden administration to speed up the delivery of critical grants to local stages, bars, movie theaters, museums and concert halls last month, Rep. Josh Harder on Monday said that over $3.8 million had been distributed to Valley businesses and nonprofits through the Shuttered Venue Operator Grant program.

“...I can’t wait to sit down for a performance and go to a movie this summer, and I’m glad our venues will be reopening with the resources they deserve,” Harder said in a statement.

TCT director Kit Casey painstakingly applied for the grant funding after the theatre was forced to close its doors last year due to the pandemic, and the Turlock entertainment organization was awarded $97,004 through the SVOG program to rehire staff and prepare for its upcoming season. 

“This grant bridges that gap and puts us in a position to start the season and expand our programming,” TCT Board of Directors President Neill Callis said. “We’ll be able to get people ready to go back to enjoying these events again indoors. People are really hungry to enjoy a concert and experience things again like we used to be able to.”

Callis and Casey, TCT’s lone employee, are joined by an enthusiastic group of new Board members including Jennifer Barney, Rafael Martinez, Elicia Padlo Pitau and Gabrielle Deubert, all of whom played a critical role in ensuring the theatre made it through its hardest year in recent memory. Callis said the Board was able to streamline TCT’s expenditures to “skeletal” operations so that the organization could survive.

Now that TCT has the chance to reopen, the nonprofit is preparing to announce a slew of new shows which will surely entertain the community this fall. Shows announced to date include The Atomic Punks and Appetite 4 Destruction in concert on Sept. 3, The Temptations in concert on Nov. 18 and comedian Lewis Black on Nov. 21. 

“It’s super exciting to get back to what the Board and the theatre are all about, which is bringing entertainment to Turlock and having this hometown jewel here in town,” Callis said. “It’s a place where people can have an intimate, fun experience, whether it’s standup comedy or a concert.”

For more information on the Turlock Community Theatre or to stay up to date with upcoming shows, visit