A couple of weeks ago with a gospel group concert and a wedding reception party planned at the Royal Theater for the weekend, the 20 year old air conditioning system sent a serious message to the Royal Board Members. The system refused to cool the place down. Ricky Graves of Graves Electrical and Air was able to charge the unit up for the weekend activities, but there was no guarantee the Freon charge would last. It did not last so the next weekend for a long scheduled birthday party Graves again gave the unit another expensive Freon infusion. The handwriting was on the wall. The heating and air conditioning system would have to be replaced to the tune of about $20,000, a sum not readily available in the Royal bank account.
With Writers Workshop scheduled on Monday, July 22, a wedding and reception scheduled for early August, and Dinner and a Movie scheduled for August 17, needless to say the Royal Theater Board of Directors were between a rock and a hard place. The gracious legacy left to the community by Royal C. “Bingo” Kinder came to the rescue. A call to the Wichita Falls Area Community Foundation with an appeal for an emergency grant was quickly honored to save the day and avoid passing out fans at the next Texasville Opry scheduled for September 7.
Luckily there was a two week break in the Royal programming schedule. Thanks to some quick work by Ricky Graves to get a new unit ordered, the Royal Theater should be cool again by the Writers Workshop special Ben Montgomery book presentation on July 22. A big thank you on behalf of the community and the Royal Theater Board of Directors goes out to the Wichita Falls Area Community Foundation – Royal C. “Bingo” Kinder Donor Advised Fund. The monetary legacy left by “Bingo” Kinder saved the day for the theater which bears his name.