Southeastern Wisconsin theaters, summer camps, sports teams receive $7.33 million in state pandemic relief grants

Part of $14 million in recovery grants awarded statewide

The BistroPlex includes two SuperScreen DLX theaters with heated leather recliners.

Gov. Tony Evers today announced $14 million in grants to Wisconsin theaters, summer camps and minor league sports teams. This includes $7.33 million to southeastern region operators. The grants are part of a $140 million spending plan to help the state’s tourism and entertainment industry recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Movie theater operators made up the bulk of the latest grant awards, accounting for about $10 million of that $14 million.

Operators with a presence in the southeastern region received nearly $6.14 million. This total includes theater operators that also have venues elsewhere.

For instance, Marcus Cinemas of Wisconsin LLC, an affiliate of Milwaukee-based Marcus Corp., received nearly $4.13 million. In grant program documents, it lists theaters across the region, but also in Dane County, Brown County and elsewhere. And American Multi-Cinema Inc. received about $1.1 million for its AMC theaters in Wisconsin. It has a theater at Mayfair Mall in Wauwatosa.

The movie theater assistance program provided about $15,000 per screen to 49 companies. It is the second pandemic relief program to assist movie theaters.

Four area sports teams received more than $690,000. They include the Kenosha Kingfish, Lakeshore Chinooks, Milwaukee Admirals and Racine Raiders. The state handed out nearly $2.8 million to 17 minor league teams.

Ten summer camp operators in southeastern Wisconsin altogether received $500,000. Recipients include Girl Scouts of Wisconsin Southeast Inc., Camp Evergreen Corp. and Boys & Girls Club of Greater Milwaukee, among others. A total of 37 summer camps statewide received $1.8 million.

“We’re proud to work alongside our many partners to make these grants a reality,” said Wisconsin Department of Administration Secretary Joel Brennan. “Getting this much-needed assistance to our minor league sports teams, movie theaters, and summer camp operators is an investment in our communities, and an investment in Wisconsin’s strong ongoing recovery.”

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Alex Zank, former BizTimes Milwaukee reporter.

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