THE WILLIAMS CENTER
But for how long?
DOWNTOWN RUTHERFORD NEW JERSEY
About the Williams center
The William Carlos Williams Center is a private, nonprofit performing arts and cinema complex located in downtown Rutherford, New Jersey. The center was named after the Pulitzer Prize-winning poet and physician William Carlos Williams. The building that the center occupies was originally built in the 1920s as a Vaudeville theater known as the Rivoli. It was a major stop for such great acts as Abbot and Costello as well as The Glenn Miller Orchestra. Currently the nostalgic 1920s-inspired theater offers 3 movie screens, local events & an outdoor terrace. The main theater, the Newman, remains closed for repair. Fundraising by the community continues to help support the goal of reopening this part of Rutherford and New Jersey's rich history.
THE NEWMAN THEATER
Behind the doors of The Williams Center lies a remarkable piece of history waiting to be restored.
SAVE THE WILLIAMS CENTER/Newman Theatre:
For decades, the William Carlos Williams Performing Arts Center, formerly the Rivoli Theatre, was the jewel of our downtown arts and retail district, attracting world famous artists to its stage. The William Center's owner, Bergen County, is planning to auction it this summer. Rutherford is currently creating a development plan that will determine what the future owner is able to do with the site.
I am writing to urge that the historic Newman Theatre be preserved and restored. Destroying the Newman Theater and creating a much smaller theater in its place is an inadequate solution because small stand-alone theaters are not financially viable. Reviving the Center's mission as a thriving arts center will bring much needed foot traffic and funds to nearby businesses, and create a vibrant commons for local residents and visitors.
Don't let this beautiful and historic building be destroyed. I request that Rutherford and Bergen County mandate in any redevelopment plan and in any contract with a developer, that they preserve the Newman Theatre. Let's protect Rutherford's unique history while working together toward a more prosperous and creative future!
Notes about community meetings: There will be two Bergen County public hearings that residents can virtually attend: March 24th at 12pm and April 7th at 6pm. The Williams Center auction will also be discussed at the next Rutherford Planning Board meeting (March 18th, 7pm) and Mayor and Council meeting (March 22, 6:30pm). Please contact your local council members individually in addition to signing the petition.
A Note from the Board of trustees: