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O.P.E.R.A., Inc. 'Next Step' fund drive exceeds $50,000 goal; more than $73,000 donated for Ellendale Opera House restoration work

O.P.E.R.A., Inc.'s latest fund drive to raise money for restoration of the historic Ellendale Opera House totaled $73,125, surpassing the "Next Step" fund-raising goal of $50,000.

The fund drive began in May and concluded Friday, Oct. 15 with a public reception and celebration in the Opera House Lobby & Gallery.

O.P.E.R.A. – Organization of People in Ellendale for Restoration of the Arts – is a non-profit organization formed in 1992 to save the 112-year-old building from the wrecking ball.

"We're very thankful to all those who pitched in to help us reach our ambitious fund drive goal," Executive Director Justin Meidinger, said. "The response from our donors was very gratifying and an indication of the growing public support for restoration of the Main Street landmark."

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Special event October 15 will celebrate success of O.P.E.R.A. 'Next Step' fund drive

A special reception – open to the public – will be held Friday, October 15 at the Ellendale Opera House to celebrate the successful completion of O.P.E.R.A.'s latest fund drive.

The celebration will feature the 'live' performance of the "Willow Creek Folk School" from the stage of the opera house auditorium.

The public reception begins at 7 p.m. followed by viewing of the Willow Creek program at 8 p.m. It will be streamed live from the opera house and can be viewed on Facebook. The link to the program can be accessed at: www.facebook.com/plainsfolk.

Tom Isern, a distinguished professor of history at NDSU, and Suzzanne Kelley, NDSU Press Publisher/Editor-in-Chief, began the weekly Willow Creek program more than a year ago when the pandemic began.

’Next Step’ fund drive more than a third of the way toward $50K goal

Donations to O.P.E.R.A., Inc.’s “Next Step” fund drive now total more than a third of the $50,000 goal. Approximately $8,500 in donations have been received as of June 30. With the dollar-for-dollar match, contributions to date now exceed $17,000.


O.P.E.R.A. kicked off the matching fund-drive in late April to help pay for improvements aimed at increasing business and community use of the historic Ellendale Opera House. The campaign goal is $50,000, with all contributions up to $25,000 matched dollar-for-dollar by anonymous opera house supporters.


THOSE WHO DONATE $250 OR MORE TO THE NEXT STEP FUND-DRIVE BETWEEN NOW AND JULY 31 WILL RECEIVE A CUSTOM-DESIGNED O.P.E.R.A. MUG.


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