The Loft Cinema, 3233 E Speedway Blvd., on April 30, 2020.

This story was created by #ThisIsTucson and BRINK and underwritten by Vantage Westcelebrating the locally-owned businesses that make our community strong. Thank you for supporting the local organizations that support us!

Just because COVID-19 forced The Loft Cinema to close its doors in March, doesn't mean Tucson's independent movie theater has stopped doing what it does best — bringing people together. At least virtually for now. 

In the wake of the closure, the nonprofit theater vowed to keep its staff employed — despite having no clear picture of what the future held — and set out to continue connecting Tucson to the kinds of movies you won't find in the big, chain theaters. Also the popcorn. The Loft found that open theater or not, the people still wanted popcorn. 

As the pandemic has forced businesses to pivot, The Loft has embraced this challenge as a time to get creative and experiment — from digitally renting out the films it would have been showing in person to selling space on the iconic marquee for people to share personal messages. 

Jeff Yanc, the program director for The Loft Cinema, says independent arthouse theaters connect us to each other and also the world outside our immediate experience. 

And the pandemic hasn't changed that. 

Supporting local-businesses as they Thrive

Vantage West is committed to supporting and celebrating the locally-owned businesses that make our community strong. For the time being, the Thrive series is focused on the efforts locally-owned businesses have made to continue serving our community during the unprecedented challenges posed by COVID-19.

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