Helen Arts & Heritage Center closing for renovations and theater addition

  • The Helen Arts & Heritage Center will be closed in January for renovations. (File photo/Stephanie Hill)
    The Helen Arts & Heritage Center will be closed in January for renovations. (File photo/Stephanie Hill)
  • Preparation has been underway at the arts center in anticipation for work scheduled to begin Jan. 13. (Photo/Stephanie Hill)
    Preparation has been underway at the arts center in anticipation for work scheduled to begin Jan. 13. (Photo/Stephanie Hill)
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The Helen Arts & Heritage Center will be closed during January for renovations to the history museum.

The work, which is being done by Woody Davis, is scheduled to start Monday, Jan. 13, with plans to possibly be completed by WinterFest Arts & Coach Tour, which is Feb. 15-16, said Nancy Ackerman, HAHC director. During this time, the art gallery, gift shop and history museum will be closed.

The renovation will add a theater to the history center, Ackerman said. The project will relocate Ackerman’s old office, currently located in the history center, and rip out from there to the old jail cells to make room for the theatre, which will have a big screen added. New flooring will be put in, along with upgrading the walls and working on digitizing the items in the books. The wall separating the two rooms in the history center will also be opened up. The theater room would have 10-15 seats, Ackerman said.

The Helen City Commission approved giving the HAHC $20,000 in June 2019 for the theatre. The approval came after Carol Powell, with the history committee at the center, came to the commissioners and requested the money for the expansion and development of the museum.

While no work is being done on the arts center, items have been removed during the renovation process.

“We’re just trying to get everything out because of the dust and people getting their artwork so we didn’t want it damaged,” Ackerman said.

The administrative office will remain open during this time, and the classes and workshops will continue as scheduled. For more information on the HAHC re-opening, visit helenarts.org.