Plumas Arts purchased the historic Capitol Club in downtown Quincy at public auction Thursday, Sept. 22, for $70,500.
“We’re thrilled and rightly a bit scared,” said Roxanne Valladao, executive director of the countywide arts organization, likening the acquisition to buying a house.
“We have saved for an opportunity just like this,” she said, noting that the group has looked at several buildings over the years.
The cash for the purchase came from “an accumulation of private donations held in trust for this purpose as well as 20 years of accumulated surplus from projects we generate,” said Valladao.
No county or state funding was used in the purchase.
Plumas Arts hopes to move from its current location in the Bell building to the new location in time for the Quincy Sparkle.
Plans for the new space include an expanded storefront gallery with a section devoted to locally made goods. “We might co-op with others,” Valladao said. The new location will also provide more office room. And the spacious second story holds much potential, but will need “a huge renovation. That’s years down the road,” she added.
Valladao sees the building as not just an art gallery, but as a space that can be rented out for parties and events. Workshop space for artists is another possibility. “We’re only limited by the creative energies of all our members and our community — and that is infinite,” she said.
She envisions the gallery being open on weekends to serve as a visitor destination.
Although the organization has not decided on a name for the new space yet, Valladao said she wants to pay homage to the building’s history by keeping “Capitol” in the title.
Plumas Arts made a similar bold move during tough budget times 11 years ago when it took over operations at the struggling Town Hall Theatre. (The Townhall Association still owns the building.) Valladao said it is a privilege to “caretake these historic buildings as community gathering places.”
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