Capitol Arts Center


On the 31st day of March while it was snowing outside, a dozen carpenters and helping hands working together as a very impressive, well-oiled machine laid down 1,200 square feet of oak hardwood flooring in the former Capitol Saloon, which is being transformed, by Plumas Arts, into the Capitol Arts Center at 525 Main Street (right across the street from the courthouse) in Quincy.

So many helping hands (The Floor Crew photo caption)" The Floor Crew: From Left to right: Jim Schaber, Al Muir, Tyrus Herbertson, Wayne Cartwright, John Wooller, Buster Heiman, Wes Mead, Peter Rudholm, Will Lombardi, Jeff Glover, Brian Plocki, Tom Neill and kneeling: Keith Linford and Bill McRoberts.

Mouse over photos for caption

Louise Young and Susie Bennett helped fuel the day"s efforts by providing a rib-sticking delicious lunch of meatball sandwiches, potato salad and cupcakes for the hard-working team. To get ready for the big floor day, Bill Rockett helped John Wooller rolled the final color coats on the walls. Diane and Bob Mackel and Marilyn Hoffman have taken on the bathroom painting and decoration.

Plumas Arts became the owners of the historical Capitol Saloon when they had the winning bid at a foreclosure auction in September of 2011. Members have made annual donations, attended fundraisers, and responded to "A Place of Our Own" for the last 25 years as Plumas Arts board and staff worked on plans to save for a building to serve as a cultural arts center.

With limited funds, it was decided that the most important initial investment that needed to be made in the refurbishing process was a new floor. "It was like an archeological dig getting down to what remained of the original floor" there were eight layers of floor and underlayment" comments Roxanne Valladao, Director of Plumas Arts. "And no, there was no gold dust or nuggets under the floor" only dirt. (We get asked that question all the time.)"

A year-end solicitation to Plumas Arts members and friends brought in enough to cover the cost of the floor and paint. Donations made in memory of Howard Heyden funded the cost of a new heater. Feather River College"s SIFE (Students in Free Enterprise) group won a grant from the Lowe"s Educational Foundation that will cover the cost of gallery lighting.

Funds will help to build the kitchen and the creation of structures for gallery display. Tax-deductible donations are still being gratefully accepted. You can donate online at or mail a check to Plumas Arts, P.O. Box 600, Quincy, CA 95971

As Valladao photo-documented the floor installation, "I kept finding myself alternating between tearing up and cracking my face with a smile as I was watching this all unfold before me. It is one thing to have dreams and work towards them. It is quite another to see those dreams come to life before your very eyes."

This is not the first sweat equity endeavor spearheaded by Plumas Arts. The 30-year old community cultural organization also manages the Town Hall Theatre and has organized massive volunteer efforts for renovations in that facility in 1987 and once again in 2003.

"I have been fortunate in this job to be part of community efforts to take care of a couple of our historic buildings"because we have always had far more in the way of human resources than financial means. Bringing together so many good people to do this king of team effort is a glorious thing to be a part of" makes you know for sure that you are very lucky to have landed in this wonderful place."

There is no place like home. And now Plumas Arts will have one. Plumas Arts is a member-supported organization. Find out how you can become a member online at or call 283-3402.

Plumas Arts plans to have a "soft opening" of the new building on May 4th as part of the Downtown Quincy Art Walk. On that night Plumas Arts will be honored to open an exhibition of work by internationally renowned photographer, Carr Clifton. A very grand opening will follow in Summer once the organization has had a bit more time to occupy the new space.