'It's rooted in the Valley': American Rescue plan to help historic Cine El Rey Theater stay open
Before the coronavirus pandemic, Bert Guerra was operating one of the most historical venues in the Rio Grande Valley, Cine El Rey Theater, located in the heart of Downtown McAllen.
The story of the modern vintage event space locked behind closed doors, the theater shut down in March of last year when the pandemic began, as it wasn't deemed an essential business.
"There's not doubt we could have just walked away, sold the building and retired, to be honest," Co-owner of Cine El Rey Bert Guerra said. "But we really care about the history of the theater. It's rooted in the Valley."
But the hard times motivated Guerra to take action. He joined the National Independent Venue Association, with hundreds of other business owners requesting financial assistance from the government.
On Wednesday, U.S. Rep. Vicente Gonzalez (D-McAllen) said President Biden's American Rescue Plan would help venues like Cine El Rey reopen again.
Guerra said he hopes to inspire other business owners who may have been overlooked and show people the importance of preserving art and culture in the Rio Grande Valley.