Highlands Cinemas

Spring Message 2022


Highlands Cinemas is currently working toward re-opening on May 6th 2022. Since there is a considerable amount of work to do, only a small part of the building will be open on the 6th with a full opening planned for Friday May 20th 2022. When we closed for the season in Oct. 2019, I somehow didn’t envision not opening for 2 years, but along came Covid-19 and changed our world. As a seasonal business with a high cost to re-open each season, we needed to be able to re-open for a reasonable normal restriction free season, with films to run and people ready to come back to the movies, to cover costs and make a profit. That certainly wasn’t the way it was the past two years.


There has been some help from the Government during the past 2 years, and many of our customers have made generous donations toward the care of our now 42 resident cats for which I am extremely grateful. A number of customers have suggested a Go-Fund-Me page to get us back on our feet, but I am reserving that option as a last ditch attempt if we need help. It is going to cost some $50,000.00 to catch up on all the things we need to do to get the building ready to open. Last summer being nervous about what this season would look like, I decided rather than borrow the money to re-open I would sell off a lot legally severed North of the Theatre in 1977, with an approved access to the Highway. Great idea until I found out that the City of Kawartha Lakes penned a new zoning bylaw in 2017, which basically screwed up the entrance and the sale. Fast forward 6 months, it is becoming clear, if I want to spend another year trying to deal with this, the problem could be solved, maybe. However since I am turning 75 this year, I look at time differently, & I am of the opinion I have more important things to do with my time, so hopefully against all odds this will turn into a good year.


At the beginning of each season, the projectors, fire alarm, fire extinguishers, AC, plumbing etc. all need to be serviced. There is extensive cleaning, and work on the property, especially after 2 years. When we start up the Insurance will have to be increased, hydro and utilities will increase and we will have staff to pay. The majority of our stock will also need to be replaced. Unfortunately looking at the substantive increases I am seeing for stock, labour and other things, our prices for admission and concession will have to go up. We will be improving ventilation in the Theatres and installing Air filtering in the auditoriums. A special thank you to people who have been offering to come in to work and help get us open.


The candy bars are normally frozen over the winter, but after two years are out of date, but still good, so we will be selling the old stock off at .50 cents a bar. We still have posters and movie banners available for sale, also T-shirts, and will be putting a quantity of promotional items we received over the years up for sale during the season. Last time I looked there were golf bags, hockey bags, small portable barbeques, knapsacks etc. We also have available surplus theatre seats, props, standees, popcorn machines and projectors, if anyone is interested. Time will tell what the future holds, so hopefully we will See You At The Movies in 2022. Excepting the person who decided to tear the wallpaper off the wall in the ladies bathroom, or the other person who this year decided to cut the fencing around the sign. Frankly I would prefer you take your business somewhere else!


I want to again thank everyone who sent us donations toward the care of our 42 resident cats, it has been a great help in these trying times. Cats who get to stay here, are here because in their moment of need there was no other alternative to save them. I want to apologize to those people who recently sent us donations by e-transfer, for my inability to thank them. I didn’t realize when I set it up for auto-deposit, there was no way to contact the person making the deposit. So if sending a donation, please include your email, and please know I am thankful and your help is really appreciated. Everyone who has pets knows the sadness of loss. It seems the last 5 years have had more than a fair share of loss, with 2 dogs, and 11 cats passing away. In 2019, we lost Milo, in 2021 Snowflake and Scruffy passed. As well we lost Hershey to cancer at only 4 years. In 2022 Shadow developed cancer, and Mr. Boots at only 5 died of a heart attack. Gumpy cat spent 4 days at the Vet and is still recovering in our Hospital Wing, somewhat less gumpy than before! On the bright side Tiger is 20 years old this year. If considering donations, we can always use blankets, dry food is Purina products and Royal Canin Urinary SO, all are addicted to Temptations, they consume 9,500 156G cans of Friskies canned cat food a year. They are adamant they hate Chicken Chunks in Gravy! In fact haven’t found a cat anywhere that will eat it! I always welcome monetary donations which help with the Vet bills and heat etc. The Wrecking Crew have lived up to their name, and are working diligently on totaling the wallpaper, drapes, carpet in their room. To top it all off in 25 years no upstairs cat has figured out how to open the magnetic catch on the panel separating the Upstairs Cats from the Downstairs Cats, until now. Tigger figured it out and passed the info on to Blondie & Katie!


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