Local nonprofits Sycamore Creek United Methodist Church, Peppermint Creek Theatre Company (PCTC), and Ixion Ensemble Theatre have partnered to bring a new first-of-its-kind sanctuary for worship, performing arts center, and entrepreneurial community kitchen to mid-Michigan: Stage One.
“It’s long been my dream to have three nonprofits under one roof with the goal of uniting faith, artists and creators from all multicultural walks of life,” said Sycamore Creek Church Pastor Tom Arthur. “We believe that the faith community should be curious, creative and compassionate which means being inclusive of everyone and supportive of our communities’ needs, which is exactly our goal in building out Stage One.”
In late 2022, Sycamore Creek United Methodist Church adopted the former Asbury United Methodist Church and began renovations on the building. The transformation of the space involved input from PCTC and Ixion Theatre, along with support for local entrepreneurs, to ensure that the vision for a 100-200 seat performing arts center and community kitchen were included in the remodel of the worship space.
“With more than five theatres in the Lansing area but only two with permanent homes, the impact of Stage One on the economic livelihood of the arts community in mid-Michigan cannot be understated,” said Ixion Ensemble Theatre Artistic Director Jeff Croff. “This is an incredible opportunity to join with other community organizations to collaborate, centralize the arts and collectively engage our community.”
The creation of Stage One builds upon previous partnerships between Sycamore Creek with PCTC and Honey Bun Bakery. In 2018, PCTC performed ‘The Christians’ at the Sycamore Creek South Lansing campus, and under their current relationship, Honey Bun Bakery has tripled their business.
“Since 1995, PCTC has built a reputation focused on creating theatre that addresses current issues and creates dialogue,” said PCTC Artistic Director Chad Badgero. “Sycamore Creek Church and Stage One have come along at a time where its evident that our missions align and serve a greater need within the community that presents endless and thrilling opportunities.”
When complete, the Sycamore Creek Church – Eastwood campus will feature a 3,676 square foot performing arts center with seating capacity for up to 200 people, and a licensed kitchen to support entrepreneurs within the community. The renovations were made possible by a loan approved by the Sycamore Creek Church community and are set to be complete by October 1, 2023 with PCTC and Ixion Theatre hosting their coming seasons in the new venue this fall.