UPDATED: Friday, April 13, 2012 - 9:54am
BRYAN -- In its glory days, the Queen Theater used to be the pride and joy of Bryan's historic downtown community but as the years passed, time took its toll on the Queen, quickly making it an eyesore until now.
The once majestic Queen Theater opened its doors back in 1939 but when it went vacant almost three decades ago, it quickly deteriorated, losing its royal status and the community's interest until now.
"It's an icon. It's part of downtown Bryan and it needs to be kept forever and ever and that's our goal. That's what we're trying to do for the community," said Jim Singleton, a volunteer architect.
For the past year the Downtown Bryan Association has been rallying supporters and raising funds to help "Save the Queen" and her crown.
"We've been looking forward to this day for the past 17 months now and we're real pleased to reach this point in the restoration," said Ben Hardeman, Chairmen of the Downtown Bryan Association.
Today marked the first big milestone in the restoration process as a crowd gathered to watch the nearly 200 pound crown be placed back on top of the building.
"To think that this isn't even the grand celebration of the re-lighting, this is just putting the crown back on and my gosh there must have been a hundred people down here just to watch this," said Singleton.
"It's just really exciting to see this happen. I've had my business down here for ten years and in all that time every body's asked about it and it's such a wonderful icon of downtown," said Greta Watkins, owner of the Frame Gallery.
An icon, that will once again be the jewel of downtown Bryan.
The Downtown Bryan Association hopes to have all the interior renovations completed by 2014 to coincide with the Queen's 100 year anniversary.