Time is running short for the rebirth of Libertyville’s landmark Brainerd High School as the cultural heart of the community. Brainerd Community Center, Inc., a registered 501(c)3 charity, has set the goal of renovating the building for reuse as a community center with a focus on the performing arts. To date the funds contributed and earned at events big and small have barely exceeded $100,000. The money has been spent on patching and painting, heating systems, security, insurance and landscaping services. Current renovations include waterproof covers for skylights and plumbing repairs. All pointing to special events this fall to demonstrate the potential as a performing arts center.
Six years into a lease contract with Community High School District 128, an initial payment of $250,000 due in less than 2 years will take a major step-up in community support. Without it demolition is all but guaranteed; much more than a summer festival venue will be lost. We are working with the Village of Libertyville to make the future of the Brainerd Building a community decision through an advisory referendum in the spring. The first step is a petition campaign leading to the ballot question. We believe an investment of $3 million in public funds (our tax dollars) can open Brainerd to the community and set the stage for operational sustainability and further improvements. Watch for your chance to help by signing our petition in the near future. Picture in your mind a community theater performance on the stage or a banquet event with 200 people attending. Brainerd can be the home for this and much more.