The Ice House Theater has shared a common property with the Creative Center, a program for developmentally challenged adults, for years. The property of East Race and North Bridge, commonly known as the Creative Center Complex, was appraised for $1.4 million in September 2022. However, according to city documents, the property was split into two parcels, allowing the Creative Center and the Visalia Players to purchase their own, separate properties. The Visalia Players bought their share of the property for a total of $350,000, while the Creative Center bought theirs for a little over $1 million.
The Visalia Players were finally given the opportunity to purchase the property when the city decided to sell the complex during the dawn of the pandemic. However, the Visalia Players, like many other performing groups, were deeply affected by the pandemic.
“We didn’t have any way to make money, because our main way of making money is to put on shows and sell tickets,” Schoettler said. “We did some online shows, and we kept reaching out to our supporters asking for donations until we were able to reopen.”