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  • Jennifer Donovan

Discover Downtown Gloversville Blog

Shine on Schine – A Beacon of Gloversville’s Past, Current, and Future in Downtown

It’s not hard to miss the prominent red brick building on North Main Street that boasts numerous historic and beautiful windows on the upper floors and contains numerous businesses on the first floor as it welcomes visitors to the Downtown Corridor.


As the sign proudly announces on the four-story Schine building, “Committed to preserving history and enhancing the vitality of Downtown Gloversville,” this gem of Gloversville was once the Kasson Opera House but has transformed with the times while keeping its history alive.

Built in 1881, the Kasson Opera House was a well-known performance hall in upstate New York. Audiences of over 1,000 people would be entertained by performances ranging from dog and monkey shows to Shakespeare plays. There were also magicians, minstrels, operas, artists, community, and political events, and even the circus that graced the stage. In the early 1900s vaudeville replaced operas. It was later bought by the Schine brothers who also purchased the neighboring Glove Theatre and decided to convert the former opera building to three floors of offices and host a private screening room. Now known as the Schine building, it was the headquarters of the Schine Circuit theaters until the 1960s. When the building landed on the tax foreclosure list years later, a group of local residents purchased the building to save it. Occasional tours of the building are held and during that time, visitors can see remnants of the great opera hall on the fourth floor with amazing ceiling murals and more.


Through their love and hard work, the building is filled with numerous activities with the ground level housing mainly commercial tenants, the second floor contains offices, and the third floor reserved for public arts. Current businesses and organizations in the Schine building include:


· First Floor – Mohawk Harvest Cooperative Market, Micropolis Art Gallery, Daniel Storto and fashion gloves, Two of Cups Couture, Glover Insurance Agency, The Apothecary, Jackson Hewitt Tax Service.



· Second Floor - CSEA Union Local 818, Massage Therapy by Donna M. Panzl (MA, LMT) and Jamime Retersdorf (BS, LMT), Legal Aid Society, IdentoGO Fingerprinting, Julia La Porta (LMT) and Adirondack Massage Therapist, Lexington Employment Resources.

· Third Floor - Gloversville Community Music and Joshua Thompson, and on the third floor is the Schine Gallery.

The Schine is currently a project in the $10 million Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI) grant and its funding will help with the vision of renovating the third floor to create an attractive and expanded space for a museum, and also create an area for arts-related co-working space. The project will include new restrooms, a shared kitchen area, offices and new windows. The size of the renovation is approximately 3,260 square feet with an estimated $407,000 budget.

This will create a unique space for artists and continue the Schine Memorial building’s reputation for supporting the arts and businesses in Downtown Gloversville.

 

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