It has taken a long time but the SunnySide Theater has opened its doors. Located in a corner of the Roseburg Masonic Building the new live music and Performace venue marks the newest use of the 1910 commercial space.
Largely financed by Laurel Lodge No.13 of the Ancient Free & Accepted Masons of Oregon, the theater is the brainchild of Danny Thomas and his wife Lu. Musicians themselves, they had a vision of how to remodel the space with its high ceilings and large windows into something that may turn into a great place to go to in downtown Roseburg.
The venue was supposed to open in 2020 but was delayed almost out of existence by COVID. Those delays prevented Thomas from booking acts that would have helped pay for renovations. As if the financial problems weren’t enough, the ancient building itself presented a unique set of challenges. The brick walls were covered by plaster, the plumbing was from another era and some parts of the building were not square or even, as they were desired to be.
Despite that, Thomas pushed on.
“A dream only dies when you decide to shelve it,” Thomas says.
The name SunnySide came from the name of Thomas’ former band, Sunny Side Up. It was meant to capture the mood of the venue, Thomas said.
The space located at 663 SE Jackson St. has been home to a parade of businesses over the last 110 years beginning with Chapman’s Drugs, a Birkenstock shoe store, a political party headquarters, and a glass blower to name a few.