SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -

Work crews are nearly finished with a $7-million restoration project at the landmark Lobero Theatre.

The work includes new restrooms, seating, air conditioning and an upgrade to the entrance plaza.

Crews were laying bricks on the walkway this week. 

They will put the finishing touches on the project that began six months ago.  For most of the time, the front of the famous building was shielded by a green construction fence.

At times, it's been open, to give the public a glimpse of the work underway including news steps at the entrance where there had been an ramp-like walkway.

The first show will be Friday December 6, a benefit concert for "Notes for Notes," a non-profit that provides musical instruments for children in several cities including Santa Barbara and Ventura.

The Lobero is the oldest continually operating theater in California dating back to 1873.