By Jon Whittle
Recently, there has been flooding in Northeast Iowa that has reminded many people of past flooding. Most people think of the 2008 flood, but others remember 1999. When Volga flooded back in 1999, the Opera House was one of the many things damaged. A renovation of the Opera House started in 2010, and is still progressing today, thanks to the many volunteers and generous donations.
VCTC, Volga City Truck Cruise, is a non profit organization that has been fundraising for the renovation. In an interview with Tom Lot, the man who started VCTC and the renovation, he said there has been $130,000 put into the Opera House in the past six years. He also plans to have an event every month by next year, which includes truck cruises, dances, and dinners.
Lott explained that he wanted to make the Opera House into a recreational building. He wants to have parties, wedding receptions, concerts, vendor shows, and plans on installing a projector and screen for watching movies.
There have been many improvements since the renovation started. According to Lott the biggest improvement was “the roof, If you don’t have a roof, you don’t have nothing.” Lott also said that they are working on the upper balcony, painting, and concrete work on the entrance.
Lott was asked why he was renovating and he replied, “History. I love my old buildings. History will tell a story, and that is the building.” There are still names and play titles written on the brick walls of the stage area, some from over a hundred years ago.
The renovation has been going on for six years since it started in 2010. Lott is hoping to be finished within four years. Then he wants to move on to a different project in the community.
The Volga City Truck Cruise started in 2009. It first started as a truck cruise in late August, but now there is a diesel truck cruise, fall cruise, and a concert that is held in the opera house.