Evergreen Playhouse was established in 1959 by a group of area citizens with a strong commitment to the theatre arts. This group of people led to the first Board of Directors of The Evergreen Playhouse. Including President- Marilyn Crosta, Vice President- Joy Linder, Secretary- Lois Nordquist, Treasurer- Carol Swenson and members Robin Koenniger, Lois Crampton, Richard Linder, Anne Caldwell, and Phillip Wickstrom. It has operated continuously since that time, presenting a variety of live theatre experiences to the community and providing many opportunities for people to share their talents on stage and off. At its inception, Playhouse founders made a decision that the theatre group would not undertake any production without funds to cover production costs. This policy has been maintained throughout the fifty-plus years of Evergreen Playhouse’s existence. Unlike many theatre companies, professional as well as non-profit, Evergreen has never operated “in the red.” Five dollar bonds were sold to finance its first play, Sabrina Fair, and were redeemed, as promised, following the production. Since that time, money to finance every play has been available before the play was produced.
At first, physical space to perform plays was donated to Evergreen Playhouse. The ballroom of the Lewis and Clark Hotel was the first “theatre” setting. Other locations were borrowed or rented until 1972, when the Playhouse received bank financing to purchase a building at 226 West Center Street, its present location. This facility has undergone several stages of adaptation and remodeling to make the most effective use of existing space. In 1989, the Playhouse made final mortgage payments and now holds a clear title to the Center Street building.