History of the Gem Cultural and Educational Center
The Gem Theater Cultural and Performing Arts Center, Inc., d/b/a the Gem Cultural and Educational Center is a 21-year old arts not-for-profit corporation. The President of the organization is Pat Jordan who spearheaded the renovation of the Gem Theater in the Historic 18th & Vine Jazz District. Jordan started plans to renovate the Gem in 1989 and worked to convince preservationists of the vision to restore the facade and to build a new 21st century-ready interior. Today, the Gem has a record of hosting local, regional and national performance acts, and special events from weddings to corporate meetings and remains a key component in the fabric of the historic district.
Once the theater was opened, the Gem organization moved on to its second mission of supporting urban visual and performing artists. It moved its operation to the Crossroads District; then the Vine Street Lofts, just south of 18th& Vine (South Vine), where it anticipates opening a Cultural Arts Center in The Castle building, the City's former jail house.