Former Clova finds niche in heart of Cloverdale, a community of ‘renewal’

Two years after trading cinema for sermons, Surrey's historic theatre is settling nicely into its new role as a place of worship

Crossridge Church Pastor Lee Francois says when the church renovated the former Clova

CLOVERDALE — It’s been a long time since the former Clova theatre has looked so new – or been closer to the Lord.

Since being born again in 2014, its sticky floors, grungy seats and giant popcorn machine are gone, replaced by brand new carpeting, comfortable, clean chairs and a giant wooden cross.

Two years after trading cinema for sermons, the theatre is settling nicely into its new role as a place of worship, says Crossridge Church Pastor Lee Francois.

“It’s been very exciting,” says Francois, adding the church feels right at home in the heart of downtown Cloverdale.

“This whole area is undergoing renewal and we’re in the business of spiritual renewal. So we see ourselves as part of the renewal that’s taking place.”

Renewal is a good word to describe the former Clova.

After being owned and operated by Craig Burghardt for 17 years, it was purchased by Crossridge Church in early 2014. Last summer, the church’s 300-350 members helped gut the theatre. Since then, renovations to the tune of between $300,000 and $400,000 have made it almost unrecognizable.

But there’s still more work to do. Francois says the front of the building is in for a facelift – the church is hoping to have it done by the end of this year.

Inside, the new look pays homage to the building’s history – the lobby features movie reel light fixtures and the washrooms boast giant historic murals that depict the theatre’s golden years.

Francois said the church wants to keep the theatre connected to the community, especially since some of the initial negativity regarding closing the Clova down.

Schools and community groups regularly use it and the church opens it up to visitors during the annual Christmas and rodeo parades.

And even though the big screen has been replaced by a big cross, you can still take the family there to see a classic Christmas movie or two, Francois said.

“We try to be good neighbours… We’re putting it to good use.”

beau.simpson@thenownewspaper.com

Just Posted

Surrey’s Amazing Tutors donates hundreds of ‘Sunshine Food Bags’ to those less fortunate

For three years, volunteers and students have been putting together donation packages

Junior Team Canada brings home gold to the Lower Mainland, again

In a 9-4 victory over Switzerland, a Langley-based curling team earned its 2nd straight world title

Surrey-Langley curlers in the running again for gold

Junior men’s team out of Langley hopes to defend its world title Sunday, going up against Switzerland

Surrey Central SkyTrain Station upgrades completed

It’s the seventh station along Expo Line to see upgrades completed. Construction began in March 2017

Semiahmoo Trail students surpass Coldest Night fundraising goal

Rocco Forte and his team are third-year participants in Saturday’s Coldest Night of the Year walk

Indigenous leaders, politicians say Trans Mountain report flawed

The National Energy Board has endorsed an expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline a second time

Legislation to protect B.C. farmland comes into effect

Regulations enhance food security, encourage long-term farming

Have you heard the legend of Shuswaggi, the Shuswap Lake monster?

Witness accounts as old as 1904, and as recent as 2018, place a creature in the lake’s depths

UPDATE: B.C. ticket holder winner of $25.9-million Lotto Max jackpot

Next draw set for Mar. 1 with an estimated jackpot of $10 million

People gather for funeral of seven children killed in fast-moving Halifax fire

Traditional portion of the service will be followed by words from community members

B.C. weavers to help Alaska Native project honouring survivors of violence

Dozens of Chilkat and Ravenstail weavers from all over North America will be weaving 5-inch-by-5-inch squares

B.C. skip Sarah Wark and team eliminated at Scotties Tournament of Hearts

Nontheless pretty impressive stuff from the 24th-ranked team in the country

Twilight Drive-In announces open season start date

Opening weekend will showcase a double feature with Aquaman at 7:15 p.m. and Glass at 9:50 p.m.

Pope’s sex abuse prevention summit explained

It’s A high-stakes meeting designed to impress on Catholic bishops the global problem

Most Read