Home » The Dreamland Cinema, An Arthouse Film Theatre, Wins the 2023-24 ‘Calling All Dreamers’ Program
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The Dreamland Cinema, An Arthouse Film Theatre, Wins the 2023-24 ‘Calling All Dreamers’ Program

Photo courtesy of Downtown Sacramento Partnership

Drum roll please…the Downtown Sacramento Foundation is thrilled to announce The Dreamland Cinema as the winner of the 11th Annual Calling All Dreamers business incubator program. The coveted prize package includes $20,000 in cash and a generous package of in-kind services to help the small business open a downtown Sacramento storefront. The Dreamland Cinema was chosen as the winner based on their unique concept and robust business operating plan. All five finalists completed months of workshops and worked with SCORE mentors to refine and pitch their business models to industry leaders.

To provide greater support to finalists of the incubator, this year Downtown Sacramento Foundation has chosen a second-place awardee to receive $10,000 in cash. The second-place winner is Ecojoyous, a refillery and local artisan goods store. Additionally, the three other finalists are eligible to receive $5,000 if they lease a downtown storefront by March 1, 2025. The three other finalists include Capital Tuk-Tuk, Nouvelle Healing, and Planted Foods.

The winning business, The Dreamland Cinema, currently operates in a 23-seat microcinema in midtown. Their goal with the support of the Calling All Dreamers winnings is to expand to a greater capacity, introduce new programming, serve restaurant quality concessions, and offer a community space for film related events and education in downtown.

“Winning Calling All Dreamers is a game-changer in helping to jump start the next phase of our business and set us up to thrive for many years to come,” said Lauren Hess, Co-Owner and General Manager of The Dreamland Cinema, “We are grateful for this wonderful program and all of the help we received from our SCORE mentor, the amazing small business owners we’ve met along the way, and for the continued support of the community and the Downtown Partnership. We are so excited to bring MORE of the best in indie, international, arthouse and cult film to Sacramento!”

Calling All Dreamers has driven economic growth in downtown Sacramento for over 10 years. The Calling All Dreamers program is produced by Downtown Sacramento Partnership and presented by Kaiser Permanente, with the generous support of the Capital Corridor Chapter of SCORE, Bank of America, SMUD, California Bank of Commerce, and the Carlsen Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship.

The valuable prize package is made possible due to support from sponsors who continue to be champions for the economic growth of the downtown core that include Bizhaven, LAMAR,

T-Rock Communications, Haven Studios, AmpleHQ and more. Partnership opportunities are still available for local businesses able to donate. Businesses interested in helping to make a difference by donating services are encouraged to contact Andrew LaFrance, Business Development Manager, at alafrance@downtownsac.org or 916-442-8575.

About the author

Traci Rockefeller Cusack

Traci Rockefeller Cusack has 25+ years of media and public relations experience.  Her work experience includes News10 (ABC) as Promotion Manager from 1989-1998 (where she developed and launched “Coats for Kids’ Sake,” a winter coat drive that lasted 20+ years plus coordinated Oprah Winfrey’s first ever visit to Sacramento) and Fleishman-Hillard as Vice President from 1998-2005 (where she led the wildly successful statewide “California Grown” program and also produced the five-minute video that played on the Jumbotron on Opening Day at Pac Bell Park). In 2007, she launched T-Rock Communications and currently handles a wide range of marketing activities for a number of top-notch organizations.

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