News & Media

What you need to know about the Mabel Tainter

This year WiSys will host a special meetup at the historic Mabel Tainter Center for the Arts in Menomonie to welcome WSTS attendees on Sunday, July 21 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.

With a longstanding history, the Mabel Tainter Center for the Arts is one of Menomonie’s most prized possessions, continuously working with various community partners to ensure the center’s promotion of the arts for all to enjoy. CNN Travel named this quaint jewel box-like theater one of “15 Spectacular Theaters” in the world.

Here’s three things you should know about the Mabel Tainter:

1. One-of-a-kind Design

The grand arch surrounding the front doors is the only arch of its kind in the country, distinguished by its immense amounts of detailing.

The Mabel Tainter Memorial Theater was designed for an intimate evening. The stage is not far from the back row and performers can see the faces of each audience member.

2. The Ideal Meeting Spot

The Mabel Tainter prides itself on being the meeting destination in Western Wisconsin, located comfortably between Madison and Minneapolis/St.Paul.

The Mabel Tainter hosts more than 60 events per year, featuring the best entertainment from around the region and across the country. The site hosts many types of shows from comedians to theater productions, as well as an annual Fine Arts and Crafts Fair.

3. A Memorable History

The Mabel Tainter Memorial Theater is in memory of Menomonie’s own Mabel Tainter, who tragically died at 19 years old. Tainter was always invested in the arts, so her parents gifted the property in her memory to the city. In addition, they opened the Mabel Tainter Literary, Library, and Education Society.

The building was commissioned in 1889 during the Victorian era when quality and design was a top priority. In 2017, the theater underwent a major renovation to ensure that it can be appreciated for generations to come.