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COUNTY LIFE

Bringing a dream to life – Vision centers on creating a movie theater in an 1884 bank building

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By BARBARA GREEN
Mark Chancellor, at the age of 30, calls himself an “old soul.”
His career as a lighting designer may have him on the cutting edge of music, but he wants to bring back a historic building back to life by creating a movie theater right in the heart of Montague.
This summer Chancellor bought the former First National Bank of Montague on the southwestern corner of the courthouse square in Montague. It was built in 1884.
After the bank closed, it was later home to Bell Phone, Carminati Grocery and Prime Cut Steakhouse. This dilapidated structure will demand a complete overhaul to fulfill this unique vision for its future.
The dreamer
Mark Chancellor grew up in the Alvord area with his parents Charles and Marsha Chancellor. His father was a Dallas firefighter, who when he retired became an electrician. He now resides in Bowie.
Mark’s parents divorced when he was young, and he spent summers with his dad in the Bowie area. He attended high school one year in Alvord and then completed high school in Dallas. After graduating from a Dallas arts school and McMurray University, he pursued a career in lighting design that has led him around the world.

The location

Moving into this next phase of his life, Chancellor began looking for the right building. It had to be at least two stories in order to provide a balcony, but he also wanted “A building with the right story.”

He checked out the old theater building in Bowie, but it didn’t have the right historic fit.
He also looked at the city auditorium in Bowie, but could not work a deal. Chancellor also was solicited by other locals who would love to have the theater in their town. However, the right building “did not speak to him “until he checked out a run down mess of a property in Montague.

Read the full feature in your weekend News.

Mark Chancellor power washes the exterior of the old bank building. (Photo by Barbara Green)

Mark Chancellor power washes the exterior of the old bank building. (Photo by Barbara Green)

 

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COUNTY LIFE

Bowie News Guide wins first place

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The Bowie News “Guide” won first place special section for semiweeklies (division one) in the 2023 Texas Press Association Better Newspaper Contest.
The visitor’s and newcomer’s guide is the largest project produced by The Bowie News each year and showcases all of Montague County. The judges stated in their comments: “Of all the community guides this was the strongest. Strong design overall. Nice use of large photos to break up section…Visually this section is a compelling read. And at 140 pages, a huge advertising success. Well done.”
Bowie News Editor Barbara Green congratulated the staff on this first place, noting this project is touched by every member of the staff in some shape or fashion and kudos go to each for their role in producing it.
The Bowie News also received a third place in news writing and fourth place in feature writing.

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COUNTY LIFE

Conservator says work on ‘Good Shepherd’ began none too soon

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Restoration work on “The Good Shepherd” a massive 8-foot tall, 580 pounds leather art piece by Dell Motley began this week at Tales ‘N’ Trails Museum in Nocona.
Victoria Book Lupia, objects conservator with Legacy Conservation, has undertaken the massive undertaking for what was Motley’s largest art piece. Motley said she felt this one-of-a-kind art was her true calling to do “The Lord’s work in leather.”

The Good Shepherd was started in August, 1980 and completed 10 years later with a total of 5,014 hours. It weighs 580 pounds and is 7.9-feet X 6.10 feet in size. All the dye was handmade.
The Good Shepherd and The Ten Commandments have been in storage due to their size. The museum board members hope removing the plywood backing will help reduce the weight, as well as preserve the artwork. Each one also had a piece of plexiglass on top of them.

Read the full story in the weekend Bowie News.

Top photo- Gale Cochran-Smith and Victoria Book Lupia look at the Good Shepherd as Lupia the conservator began taking it apart for the restoration work. (TNT photo)

A close-up look at each lily shows the intricacies of each flower and how Motley strived to make them have texture and depth with some flat and others on top of leaves to have some lift. (TNT photo)

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COUNTY LIFE

BCDB readies clean-up night

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Bowie Community Development Board members and volunteers will have a downtown clean-up night at 5 p.m. on June 14.
Any volunteers are welcome. The group will meet at the corner of Mason and Tarrant Streets (finance department parking lot).

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