Completed Projects

Youth on Main Street $5,000 – COMPLETED  Fall of 2015

Description:  A group of High School students formed a committee to come up with ideas to aid in improving our downtown.  One idea was to have banners made to be hung on the north side of the SanSpa Warehouse building located to the south of the Olson Cultural Event Center.  The intention of these banners is not only to improve the appearance of the area, but to also improve the acoustics of the Olson Cultural Event Center.  LABF approved the request for funds.


Royal III Theatre $250,000 – COMPLETED Fall of 2016

Description:  The Royal III Theater has operated in the City of Le Mars since the early 1900’s and has brought immeasurable entertainment and quality of life to the citizens of Le Mars and surrounding areas since that time.  The theater was recently renovated and updated to meet current industry standards; however, due to a shortfall in funds and inevitable closure, the decision was made to have the City purchase the building and assets.  The City of Le Mars acquired the building and assets April 1, 2015.  Operations are currently run by Main Street Theater.  If funded by LABF, the City of Le Mars will not have to allocate tax dollars to this project.  LABF approved the request for funds.

Le Mars Postal Playhouse $100,000 – COMPLETED June 2018

Description:  The Postal Playhouse is owned by the City of Le Mars and utilized by Le Mars Community Theatre as a facility for the performing arts.  The Community Theatre stages four productions each year.  Annual memberships can be purchased by anyone who would like to attend.  We also offer a single ticket price option of $15.  While many theatres in the area charge more, our philosophy has been to keep our prices low so that anyone can easily attend.  The project would be to construct an addition (600 SF) onto the north face of the existing building for behind the stage activities and better interior access to the basement. 


Upon receipt of the Gilchrist $100,000 Grant monies, LABF engaged with the City of Le Mars to commence completion of design and execution of contracts as planned.  The 14 by 40 foot addition was constructed on the rear of the current building that the Le Mars Community Theatre’s Postal Playhouse calls home. With the addition of this new space the Postal Playhouse will be able to enhance their performance and work space for building sets, more backstage capabilities and storage space.  HVAC and electrical work along with insulation and interior finish work is complete.  The application of stucco on the exterior finish has now been completed and painted.  Ramp has been installed on the east side.  (The doors on the north side are for trucks to back up and deliver/off load.

Olson Cultural Event Center

Amount approved: $250,000

- Remove Parking Lot – Maintain Brick-Paved Walks

- Add Picnic Areas, Covered Pergolas, Shade Features

- Add Stadium Seating with Raised Flower Beds

- Enhance Landscaping with Grass, Trees, Flowers and Shrubs

- Upgrade Stage Sound System, Enhance Ambiance, Acoustics

- Create Permanent Stage Screen

- Enhance Outdoor Lighting

- Place Banners on Building – South End on 1st Street

- Install Sprinkler System

- Remove/Replace Parking Lot behind Postal Playhouse

- Complete Street Scape Project on 1st Avenue

Municipal Parks Ponds/Campground

Amount approved: $600,000

- Dredge North Pond-Increase Depth/Fill with New Sand

- Fill in South Pond with North Pond Dredging

- Restore Swimming/Beach Area

- Restore Ice Skating Rink

- Add Lighting Around Recreational Area

- Add Picnic Areas

- Create Additional Campsites on South Pond Area

- Add RV Sewage Dump Site


Municipal Park Shelter House

Amount approved: $250,000

- Renovate Existing Shelter House

- New Roof, Windows, Electrical, Plumbing

- Add Indoor Restroom Facilities

- Update Kitchen/Bar Area

- Add Seating Capacity

- Update/Enhance Courtyard Area

- Add Access Road and Entrance for Catering

- Maintain Historical Integrity

- Convert WPA Building at Park Entrance to Campground Shower/Restroom Facility

- Plant Pine Trees between Shelter House and Golf Cart Sheds

Skate Board Park

Amount approved: $400,000

- Relocate to Northeast Corner of O’Toole Park

- New Design and Materials

- Construct Unisex Restroom

YMCA Improvements

Amount approved: $2,200,000

· New Welcome Center Entrance Addition

· New Fitness Rooms· Meeting Rooms

· Y Camp Room· Auxiliary Gym

· Indoor and Outdoor Pool Enhancements

Le Mars Postal Playhouse

TABLED  January 2017 until July 2017 when Approved for funding following the approval from the Gilchrist Foundation Grant Monies of $100,000.

Description: Le Mars Postal Playhouse is owned by the City of Le Mars, and is utilized by the Le Mars Community Theatre as a facility for the performing arts.  The Le Mars Community Theatre hosts productions during the year that are very well attended.  The Le Mars Community Theatre enriches quality of life by offering an artistic and cultural outlet for residents of all ages in the greater Le Mars area.  The Le Mars Postal Playhouse would like to construct an addition of 600 square feet onto the north face of the existing building for behind the stage activities and better interior access to the basement (where all the customs, stage props, etc. are stored).  They are asking of LABF $100,000.  Enhancements to the building will allow them to better provide quality performances to their audiences.  LABF tabled this request pending fund availability in January 2017.  Then, in July of 2017 LABF received Grant Monies from the Gilchrist Foundation totaling $100,000.  Because of this – LABF has not  approved for funding.

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Le Mars Area Betterment Foundation
50 Central Ave SE

Le Mars, IA 51031
Ph: 712-546-8821


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