Great Lakes Center For The Arts
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Construction Update

Tremendous progress continues with the construction of the Great Lakes Center for the Arts, as the reality of this dream comes to life. Workers appreciate the gorgeous fall weather while finishing the exterior and preparing for the coming winter. 

It is now possible to stand on the stage and imagine the connections that will be made between artist and patron. Careful consideration was given for the exterior and interior materials in selecting colors and textures that reflect the beauty of Northern Michigan.

Local Involvement Equals Success

None of this is possible without the hard work and coordinating efforts of our Michigan-based construction professionals and manufacturing companies who are working tirelessly on this project. With the dream in their hands, each team adds a unique layer to the assembly of the Center. From the overall design and vision by TowerPinkster to the location of lights and switches, every element has been designed with intention.

Brad Kranig, Senior Project Manager at the Christman Company notes, “You don’t get to build something like this everyday.” Kranig has been with the Michigan-based firm for 17 years managing construction projects across the country. He is thrilled to be on site right in his hometown. “Developing a regional contractor base for this project was always the plan from the beginning,” continues Kranig. “Large projects like this tend to be more successful when you get local involvement.”

Jill O’Neill, Executive Director of the GLCFA added, “We feel it is very important to the economic vitality of the region to use Michigan contractors and vendors for this project.”

It is with that same intention that regional materials and vendors were selected. For instance, the façade of the building will be covered in Fond du Lac stone, a midwest sourced material that reflects the beauty and ruggedness of Lake Michigan’s shoreline.

One of the most important features of the interior, aside from the stage, will be the seating. The Irwin Seat Company was founded in Grand Rapids over 100 years ago and is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of audience seating for movie theatres, auditoriums, arenas, performing arts centers, stadiums and places of worship. 

Many of the fabrics used in the Center from the theater curtain to upholstery and acoustical fabric wall coverings are by Michigan-based fabric purveyor, CF Stinson.

The GLCFA is grateful for the dedication, commitment, and outstanding workmanship of all those erecting the state-of-the-art center. It truly is going to be a showcase of local materials, talent, and effort. We look forward to welcoming area residents and visitors alike to experience the Great Lakes Center for the Arts in the summer of 2018!


  • Theater
  • Dance
  • Music
  • Intellectual Dialogue
  • Movies & Film
  • Education