Senator calls for meeting at the Senator

posted by Michael Zoldessy on May 18, 2009 at 12:00 pm

BALTIMORE, MD — The media has reported in error that Baltimore City now owns the Senator Theatre.

It has also been miss-reported that The Baltimore Development Corporation [bDC] will soon choose the new owner or operator of The Senator Theatre and determine its future entertainment programming through the RFP process.

It is our understanding that the ownership of the landmark Senator Theatre will be determined by the outcome of an upcoming public auction, expected to take place later this summer. The successful bidder at the public auction will own The Senator. In an effort to separate fact from fiction regarding The Senator Theatre and its uncertain future, Maryland State Senator Joan Carter Conway, who represents the 43rd third legislative district, has called for a public meeting at the theatre in response to constituent concerns. The public information session will take place at The Senator Theatre on This Wednesday Evening, May 20th at 6pm
Please help to spread the word!

Senator Conway has invited City and State economic development representatives to attend. Representatives of Preservation Maryland, Baltimore Heritage, The Baltimore City Historical Society, The Commission for Historic and Architectural Preservation [CHAP] and the media have also been invited, along with North Baltimore business and community leaders concerned about The Senator Theatre.

Scheduled government economic development representatives include:
– Clarence Snuggs, Maryland’s Deputy Director of Housing and Community Development,
representing Raymond Skinner, Secretary of Housing & Community Development.
– Kim Clark, Executive Vice President of The Baltimore Development Corporation,
representing 1st Deputy Mayor Andrew Frank, Neighborhood and Economic Development.
Topics to be discussed include:
– The State of Maryland’s financial investment in The Senator Theatre.
– State of Maryland’s position in Balitmore City’s upcoming foreclosure proceedings.
– City of Baltimore’s purchase of the 1st Mariner mortgage note secured by The Senator Theatre.
– Baltimore City’s public auction process intended to transfer ownership of The Senator Theatre.

The Senator has become known as “The People’s Theatre”. Apart from the theatre’s inaugural opening in October of 1939, the upcoming transition from 70 years of continuous family ownership and operation is a pivotal event in the renowned theatre’s rich history.

Please mark your calendars and encourage your family, friends and neighbors to attend the upcoming meeting at The Senator. For further information visit or

Tom Harris

Theaters in this post

Comments (1)

Maximillian Genus
Maximillian Genus on May 21, 2009 at 3:13 pm

My thanks to Senator Joan Carter Conway for her handling of last night’s meeting. Many interesting discussion points were raised this time around.
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I believe many who attended last night were stunned when my wife (after listening to a lot of the discussion) bluntly asked Tom Kiefaber if Baltimore City’s CHAP group had kept their noses out of The Senator, none of this mess with the city would have been necessary? And, the short answer was, “YES”.

Kiefaber stated he was in negotiations with 2 seperate prospective buyers when CHAP announced their intention to apply controls on the theatre’s interior. Within 24 hours, both negotiations evaporated.

So, now the theatre will go to foreclosure auction (as I recall the city solicitor stated) in about 2 months. Baltimore City plans to purchase the 1st Mariner note this Friday, May 22nd. City officials also promised that the would be widely marketed, but they do not expect anyone to bid more than the city’s minimum of $950,000.

IF that turns out to be the case, the next step will be for the Baltimore Development Corp. (BDC) to formulate an RFP for a new owner or leasing operator.

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