DISCOVER the Bijou by the Bay

We at the Traverse City Film Festival are going to open a SECOND year-round movie theater in downtown Traverse City! And we need your help. The City Commission has granted us permission to renovate and bring back to life the 80-year-old (and long-vacant) Con Foster Museum, which sits behind the State Theatre on the beach in Clinch Park.

We will restore the Con Foster — originally built by President Roosevelt’s Civil Works Administration — with the same loving care and with the same team that resurrected the State Theatre in 2007. Because it sits on the shores of our beautiful Grand Traverse Bay, we have decided to call this new theater the “Bijou by the Bay.” The Bijou (pronounced “BE-zhu,” the French word for “gem”) was a popular name for movie theaters in the 1930s and ’40s and we think it fits this new venue quite well.

The Bijou by the Bay will be a unique and wonderful place to see a great movie, and we plan to have our Grand Opening on July 29 — the night before the beginning of this year’s Traverse City Film Festival!

When we wanted to restore the State Theatre, Buzz Wilson and his family were the “angels” who wrote the first check. The Milock family, myself, Kathleen Glynn, and four others joined in as matching angels, and the community brought us to the finish line by sponsoring seats and becoming members of our new theater. We did not use any tax dollars and we did not run a big fundraising campaign.

Today, in order to bring this new theater to life, Richard and Diana Milock have remarkably stepped forward again to be our main financial angel. They have written a donation check of a quarter million dollars! This alone will cover one-third of the costs of the renovation.

And now, in order to pay for the other two-thirds of bringing to life this beautiful theater on the water, we are going to need help from you! Click the button below to learn more about the Bijou by the Bay and help TCFF create a stunning new venue for film in Traverse City!