Ark Lodge Cinemas- The "Gem" of Columbia City

“The cinema has no boundary; it is a ribbon of dream.” Orson Welles 

Here's how you can be one of the "GEMS" of Columbia City- our auspicious goal (of 3 million) is to PURCHASE the building to continue featuring films in our neighborhood. To reach this goal we need YOUR HELP! 

We have some AWESOME Sponsorship opportunities for you to take advantage of, starting at only $100.00. Be a "friend" of the Ark Lodge Cinemas!

Our Story

The Ark Lodge building was built by local Masons in 1921. They sold it in 2001 and in 2005 the upstairs Altar Room was converted into a movie theater. Two additional screens on the main floor were added followed by the fourth screen which debuted in 2014. Located in the heart of Columbia City’s National Historic District, it serves as one of the major cultural hubs and the only neighborhood theater, offering a wide variety of independent, classic, foreign, and Hollywood films, in addition to simulcasts broadcasts. 

With its four screens, including the intimate lounge upstairs, the Ark brings stories from around the globe to its little corner of the world. You will find a local flavor, a relaxed vibe, and friendly staff.  

 A movement to restore the vitality of one of our oldest Seattle neighborhoods known for its love of arts and culture, and entertaining nightlife; from cinema and theater to local galleries and life-size wall murals, a community full of art is a community full of culture. Research has even shown that cities that emphasize art have more civic and social engagement, better child welfare and even lower poverty rates. Stimulating Business. Arts organizations stimulate business and economic growth in a community. 

Columbia City is one of eight Landmark Districts located in the City of Seattle. It was designated a landmark district in 1978 and was also placed on the National Register of Historic Districts that same year.(source: ). 

Due to the closure forced by the Pandemic we want to take the time given to us to be more inclusive to all our neighbors by adding much needed ADA accessibility features, upgrades to the seating and a beautiful marquee to add a vibrancy to the historic Masonic Ark Lodge building. We need your help to make this dream a reality.

Why GoFundMe? 

Since mid-March we have been able to cover fixed expenses with savings, and creative budgeting. We want to reopen our doors at the end of this Pandemic and reveal a new look, a more inclusive theater, a gathering space for families and an “after dark” club atmosphere to indulge in arts, cinema, music, wine, and petite entrees. Truly a “SYMPHONY FOR YOUR SENSES”  This GoFundMe goal would not only sustain us to have our staff return to work, but also allow for the upgrades that we are in need of to make the space more functional and inviting. Our auspicious goal is to one day own the property to ensure that we will always have a movie and arts venue right here in Columbia City. 

What Will Donations Be Used For?

Funds from this campaign will directly cover the renovation of the theater; adding much needed ADA accessible features, a beautiful, vibrant, and welcoming marquee to bring a renewed feel to the historic building and new seating. It will also allow us to catch up on some of our fixed expenses while the theater has been closed since Mid-March. 

Why Can't the Ark Lodge Cinema Open to Partial Audiences?

King County, WA remains in Phase 2 of the state's phased re-opening for businesses. With Phase 3, movie theaters will be allowed to operate, but only at 25% capacity. Operating expenses would exceed income. It is a no-win scenario. We cannot open until we can comfortably and safely invite audiences back. We love our community and staff and will only open when it is safe and advisable.  It is very possible that we will not reopen until the fall of 2021. In the meantime, though, this allows us to do the renovations, the upgrades and prepare to reopen our doors safely with a brand-new look. 

But Do Movie Theaters Even Matter Anymore?

There are all kinds of ways to experience art, but we believe sometimes you should enjoy it collectively. The Ark Lodge Cinema is more than just a movie theater: it is a hub for the arts in this community. We have employed local residents since our opening. We continue to add new features to attract a more diverse population. With the upcoming renovation we will be adding a wine and beer bar, a small catering kitchen to serve petite entrees, tapas, and appetizers. We will have private events, live music “after dark.” Our goal is to provide you a gathering place; a place away from home where you come to meet with friends and mix and mingle with neighbors. Movies today are viewed on screens of all sizes (and you can stream some of ours at home!), but there is a certain movie magic that can only be experienced as the directors/writers/actors/editors intended it - on the big screen and shared with others. We think the Ark Lodge Cinema still matters and hope you do too.

Who We Are?

We are an independent small business who believes in community, supporting our local nonprofits, education, and neighborhoods any way we can. Paying forward to the community that we LIVE, WORK and PLAY in. 

What's Next

Improvements to enhance your theater experience. Added amenities and features and most importantly, ADA features we have not been able to offer in the past. Working with local agencies to ensure that we offer a wide variety of accessible features including a lift for patrons to enjoy the upstairs theater screens, facade improvements highlighted by the new marquee, addition of the wine bar and petite entrees and plush seating; you will not ever want to leave. 

Columbia City neighborhood is known for being a prominent entertainment and nightlife hub, inclusive to all people. By contributing to this fund, you will directly aid in preserving our neighborhood cinema and arts venue.

Donations (641)

  • Anonymous
    • $15 
    • 2 yrs
  • Anonymous
    • $50 
    • 2 yrs
  • dwight pelz
    • $100 
    • 2 yrs
  • Deborah Philips
    • $100 
    • 2 yrs
  • Dawn Edwards
    • $50 
    • 2 yrs

Fundraising team: Team Ark Lodge (2)

David McRae
Raised $925 from 6 donations
Seattle, WA
Justin Pritchett
Team member
Raised $620 from 9 donations
This team raised $64,569 from 626 other donations.

Your easy, powerful, and trusted home for help

  • Easy

    Donate quickly and easily.

  • Powerful

    Send help right to the people and causes you care about.

  • Trusted

    Your donation is protected by the  GoFundMe Giving Guarantee.