TREMONT — The Barn Arts Collective was told to find another venue for this weekend’s performances of “Cabaret” after town officials said the theater group had damaged the floor of the Tremont Community Center.
Town Manager Dana Reed said Wednesday that he made the decision to curtail the group’s use of the town-owned building after learning of the damage.
“Cabaret” will now be performed at Camp Beech Cliff in Mount Desert.
The Barn Arts Collective had to scramble last week after the town’s Planning Board upheld a stop work order for the use of a boat maintenance shed for the group’s productions. The action followed the Planning Board’s Aug. 22 determination that a site plan review application by Andrew Simon and Brittany Parker of the Barn Arts to make bring their use in compliance with zoning regulations was found incomplete.
With shows scheduled for Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Simon and Parker moved the production into the community center, which also serves as the Tremont Consolidated School gymnasium. When not being used for school activities, the center is open for use by residents at no charge.
The Barn Arts use attracted the attention of the town’s Recreation Board, which oversees use of the facility.
Amy Murphy, chairman of the Recreation Board, said the committee is going to discuss the Barn Arts use of the facility at their Sept. 13 meeting. She said they anticipate asking selectmen to tighten up policies on the use of the building.
Murphy said the Recreation Board has, in the past, turned down use of the center by someone who wanted to profit by charging for lessons. The Barn Arts doesn’t charge an admission fee but does ask patrons for donations. It is not a registered nonprofit.
The scheduling of blocks of time also has been denied in the past. “There’s no regular scheduling because it’s not fair to everybody,” Murphy said.
Reed and Murphy both said they had not been approached by Barn Arts. School Principal Jandrea True confirmed she gave the permission. However, outside of school activities, school officials have no authority to allow someone to use the center.
When asked Wednesday about paying for repairing the floor, Simon said Parker discussed that with the school custodian, but nothing had been finalized.