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ATHENA — The Gem Theatre once stood as a shining jewel in the Athena community, and soon will return to its former beauty with the help of local school teacher Rob McIntyre and a group of determined students.

The theater, which originally opened as a restaurant and saloon in 1901 before becoming a theater in 1909, has stood empty for 55 years. It was donated to the city in 2004 to be renovated as a theater, and McIntyre along with about 400 students have been working on it since.

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Rob McIntyre overlooks the Gem Theatre in Athena from its balcony on Friday, April 14, 2023.


The Gem Theatre in downtown Athena nears completion Friday, April 14, 2023.


The bar of the Star Saloon next door to The Gem Theatre in Athena nears completion Friday, April 14, 2023.

Rob McIntyre


Original Article: Source