PORT ORCHARD — Dragonfly Cinema, a Bay Street fixture that has taken on different roles and names over the years since its debut as a movie theater in 1914, has shown its last feature film in the business’s current “for profit” operational structure, according to the owner and operator, Nick Taylor.
Taylor said the theater screened the “Rocky Horror Picture Show” — a popular weekend draw —last Saturday, then closed its doors for the time being. The Dragonfly will remain closed until Taylor and his wife and business partner, Gabrielle Evans, meet with a group of community members who have a shared interest in perhaps repositioning the business into a nonprofit organization.
Taylor, who took control of the theater from then-owner Gryphon Shafter in 2016, said they had attended a forum of national independent art-house theater operators and owners in Nashville recently, where they learned that upwards of 97 percent of the art houses have gone nonprofit in order to provide stability to their businesses.
Taylor posted a message to the theater’s followers on Facebook Monday morning that detailed his appreciation for the South Kitsap community’s support since he took control of the Dragonfly.
“Our mission from day one has been to bring world-class, quality cinema to our community, and the Port Orchard Film Festival has been the crown jewel of that goal,” Taylor wrote.
Taylor said that he is “open to all interested parties, but especially those that might be willing to work as part of a team to transition to a nonprofit structure. The future for the arts in Port Orchard and Kitsap County is bright and we believe that there are many who would like to shepherd the Dragonfly forward.”
Concurrently, an email was sent out Monday to a number of community leaders and fine arts followers by Steve Sego, co-owner of the Port Orchard Public Market and the Dock Bar & Eatery, who has scheduled a meeting on May 29 to discuss options for the theater. Taylor and Evans will be involved in the discussion, according to Sego’s email, as will others who are part of the South Kitsap and Bremerton civic entertainment ranks.
“It is fitting then that with another successful festival now in the books, we announce that we are looking for new stewards for the Dragonfly, to take it further into the future so that it may continue to solidify its position as a cultural fixture in the community.”
The theater hosted the third annual Port Orchard Film Festival on May 3-5.