The Perfect Public-Private Partnership

Jessica and I bought our first house in 1997. In the heart of downtown Farmington, we were literally right around the corner from the Civic Theatre. We moved from that house in 2006 – a whopping two blocks! A brisk walk still gets us to show time in about five minutes. As is true for many of our neighbors, the Civic remains our first choice for catching Hollywood’s latest releases.

Built in 1940, the iconic art-deco movie house had begun to show its age by the late 20th Century. City leadership made the bold decision to purchase and restore this key piece of the cityscape. But they insisted that the theatre’s management operate a profitable, self-sustaining movie house. This past year, under Scott Freeman’s management, 71,000 people attended the Civic, bringing in over half a million dollars in revenue.

For three of the last four years, the Civic has been named the best movie theatre in metro Detroit by Channel 4. It is in the running again this year. (Click here to cast your vote for the Civic!)

We hear a lot about government waste and mismanagement. Farmington and the Civic deserve a curtain call for public dollars well managed and well spent. To learn more about the Civic – or just to see what’s playing on Friday night – visit

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