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Save the Rio

The Rio Theatre launches its highly anticipated #SaveTheRio Crowdfunding Campaign…

UPDATE! We’ve been given more time! Our new deadline is April 16th!

Friends of The Rio,

The Rio Theatre needs your help! Recent zoning changes have attracted the attention of developers who want to buy The Rio and tear it down for a new development project that would leave a big cavernous hole on the corner of Commercial and Broadway for years, and there is only one way to stop them: We have to buy The Rio!

To do that, we need to raise a $3 million down payment: we hope to do that with $1 million from donors like you, plus $2 million from private investors.

We can do this! The Rio has overcome adversity before with the huge support of the community. Our accepted offer to purchase the property was supported by over 22,000 signatures collected in just five days.

The stakes are extremely high. 

Thankfully, we’ve got huge grassroots community support behind us! Vancouverites are tired of losing their cultural venues and community spaces. For many people in East Vancouver specifically, the Rio Theatre has become “the last stand” – and we’re not going to let it be torn down. 

The very public outcry got the attention of writer-director Kevin Smith, who offered himself for a fundraiser on March 30 – with back-to-back events selling out in hours, and all the proceeds headed to the #SavetheRio campaign. Update: We raised over $50,000 from these two sold out events! 

How are we going to do this? We can’t do it alone.

With a team of private investors and donations from the community, we can absolutely reach our goal to buy the property. We have created a registered non-profit, Vancouver Art House Society, so that the donated funds from the community will be used for the Society to purchase equity shares of the property, ensuring the equity gains made from funds donated to the society will go back to the community. While the Vancouver Art House Society will not be involved with the private business that operates the Rio Theatre, it will have a mandate to save, secure, and support other arts, culture and community spaces in the city.

The Vancouver Art House Society 

A registered non-profit B.C. Society with a mandate to help save Arts and Culture spaces in Vancouver. Run by a board of industry professionals, this Society was created to ensure that funds raised by your donation will not only help save the Rio, but it will continue on as a legacy project to help other Vancouver arts and culture organizations in the future.


See our Save The Rio crowdfunding campaign link here for more information:

Thank you!