Golden Gate Theatre

5176 Whittier Boulevard,
East Los Angeles, CA 90022

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Showing 51 - 75 of 162 comments

kencmcintyre on August 5, 2007 at 6:12 pm

Here is an undated architect’s sketch from the LAPL:

kencmcintyre on June 30, 2007 at 5:56 pm

I just noticed the status at the top of the page. Status should be closed.Glad the photos brought back some memories. I can’t help wondering what the inside looks like, though. Too bad the Conservancy doesn’t extend its program to East LA.

RAlvarez on June 30, 2007 at 1:32 am

truly some amazing detailed photos of what was once the flagship theatre of that area. thank you ken for jarring my memory.

kencmcintyre on June 23, 2007 at 3:00 pm

Excerpt from an LA Times article dated 2/9/27:

This week will mark the beginning of building operations on the theater project on Whittier Boulevard in Golden Gate Square. The theater proper will seat about 1500 persons, and will contain thirteen stores. There will also be several apartment units. It is planned as a legitimate playhouse, but will be equipped for motion pictures as well.

kencmcintyre on June 23, 2007 at 10:54 am

Looking at the photo I posted on 9/1/06, it appears that the outer buildings were constructed first and used as shops. They then built the theater on the inside and added the two marquees. If anyone disagrees, let me know.

kencmcintyre on June 23, 2007 at 10:49 am

I took a batch of photos yesterday, which I will post later. Very sad to see the building deteriorating. If nothing is ever going to be done with that, it should be razed.

kencmcintyre on June 11, 2007 at 8:22 pm

Here is the lineup on 6/26/35. Well worth a couple of simoleons:

Held Over: Joe E. Brown

Will Rogers – “Doubting Thomas”

Baer-Braddock Fight Film

kencmcintyre on May 29, 2007 at 2:21 pm

His name was the first strike (from the LA Times, 11/30/29):

Walter H. Tinklepaugh was named yesterday in a complaint charging robbery of the Golden Gate theater at Whittier and Atlantic Boulevards. Mr. Tinklepaugh was identified by Helen Weddle, cahier, as the man who robbed her on September 3 and 11th inst., of $102 ad $23, respectively.

DaveG on November 22, 2006 at 1:07 pm

For a recent pic (11/21/06) go to

gverdin on November 6, 2006 at 8:07 pm

Add the Terrace Theater to the list of long-gone movie palaces of East Los Angeles. The theater was located in City Terrace on City Terrace Drive. The theater was informally known as “the Show” to the citizens of City Terrace, and it was a special place to anyone fortunate enough, and old enough, to have attended a Saturday matinee. I remember the students of City Terrace Elementary School meeting every Saturday in the first three rows of the theater (no one sat with their parents). The price of admission was 25 cents for two features, and the theater boasted a balcony and a glass enclosed room for mothers with babies or small children. I remember watching all of the Three Stooges Meet…(Snow White, Hercules, etc.) movies. Does anyone else remember “the Show?” Can anyone offer more information about the B-17 Spirit of City Terrace?

William on October 12, 2006 at 6:07 am

That’s the same photo that ken mc posted on Sept. 1st 2006.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on October 12, 2006 at 5:19 am

A 1930 picture of Whittier Boulevard showing the Golden Gate Theatre. You can also see, farther down the street, a Van De Kamp’s Bakery with its windmill.

RAlvarez on September 27, 2006 at 4:46 pm

unfortunately, Beverly W. you will find that some of those suburbs areas like la puente are in probably worse shape than boyle heights was back in those early days. that is a big shame in itself. a reason to continue the “flight” that occured back in the 60’s to even farther locations. recently it seems that the push to bring boyle heights back to LIFE again is underway with new homes being built near downtown and also the reconditioning of old buildings, with the creation of lofts and condos in that area. the cycle is beginning. i will always remember the way it was.

gverdugo on September 27, 2006 at 6:49 am

I was born in EastLA in 1966 i remember growing up and going to the movies at the GoldenGate Theater on the corner of atlantic and whitter blvd it was a cool place to go see a movie i remember when we didn’t have any money we would sneek in through a hole in the back of the building it would be very dark inside, then in 1987
Pastor Mike and Donna Neville moved there church congragation from
maywood ca to the Golden Gate Theater and the churche’s name was
Praise Chapel Christian Fellowship I remember when i walked inside
the building i felt the power of God in the movie theater I was a
Gang Member from the Winter Gardens Gang that night i gave my life to Jesus Christ and i was never the same again nd alot of people were
getting saved and born again. The golden gate Theater was not only a
movie theater it was a place of worship were God moved in a very powerfull way the theater is very special to me because my life was
tranformed and not only me i have friends who got saved and are now pastoring churches all over the country who ever knew that this was going to happen. Everytime someone ask me where my life was changed
i tell them in the Golden Gate Theater under pastor Mike Neville…
so no forget that there was a powerfull christian called Praise Chapel in East Los Angeles because of that im am now a pastor
in Kansas City , Missouri its called Praise Chapel South K.C
what a blessing i never saw this for my life but now God is using
me to help other people that need to find their place with God.
that movie theater was meant for something good real good and I thank
God that im one the very few that could say my church was the Golden
Gate Theater God bless you. Pastor George Verdugo Jr

BeverlyWilson on September 18, 2006 at 10:42 am

I was born in Los Angeles in 1944 and my family moved to ELA when I was a baby. We lived on Record Street, just below Union Pacific, until 1952 when we moved to Downey Rd. I attended Eastman St. school through 6 grade. Is there anyone out there who went to Eastman? I have fond memories of the Golden Gate and the other theatres in ELA. I saw “Gone With The Wind” there in 1954. I saw many movies at the Boulevard Theatre. I remember seeing “From Here To Eternity” in 1953. My friends and I often caught the bus for a dime and went to the Montebello Plunge. My brothers and I all learned to swim in that pool. We left ELA in 1956 and moved to Montebello for 2 years and then on to La Puente. That was the route that many people took back in the mid-fifties, moving out to the suberbs where it was more affordable. I have gone back to the old neighborhood several times over the years to have a look, but it is depressing. Too many changes, and not for the better. I am glad that I grew up in the fifties and have the memories that I do. I have lived in many different places and am happy where I am now, but my heart will always be in East LA.
Beverly W.

Belinda on September 9, 2006 at 6:05 pm

Thank You :) My dear neighbor that just passed away this year had lived here since way before the 710 fwy was built. She never mentioned anything about a court house and so on. It is nice to hear many people still interested what history East L.A. has. I hope one day the Golden Gate Theater opens for the public once again :)

RAlvarez on September 9, 2006 at 10:45 am

the court house and/or coroner must have existed before the 710 fwy because i have never seen or heard of either. i have live in the area since mid fifties. i may be wrong or your location may be wrong. (unlikely) Now my interest is peaked. i will investigate.

richard56ela on September 5, 2006 at 2:28 pm

Very nice pictures ken mc. I believe members have tried to contact me through this web site & I am having trouble getting back to you, so here’s my email. Thank you for sharing.

Belinda on September 4, 2006 at 10:27 pm

Wow… Thanks for the pictures
I am glad I came across many great comments. I have lived in East Los Angeles all my life (28). The area has changed so much even in a short time. It is a shame that people here are not caring for the area as much as I am. I had never heard such history the area has. I just have questions regarding a courthouse, coroner’s office and so on near Ford and Whittier Bl. Where was it actually located at? Do you have any information regarding Ford Boulevard Elementary School?
Anyone know any information regarding the church on the corner of, Fetterly and Olympic Bl? I came across a man that told me it was once an opera house. It is now San Francisco Church; this man attends church just to reminisce when his wife used to sing there.


kencmcintyre on September 1, 2006 at 4:31 pm

This is a 1930 photo. The theater is up and running:

kencmcintyre on September 1, 2006 at 3:33 pm

Here is a photo from the 1920s – no theater, or at least no marquee. Interesting:

richard56ela on July 12, 2006 at 7:07 pm

Most people that I’ve asked remember the Two Guys store on Whittier Blvd. just east of Goodrich Ave., but they don’t remember that when that building first went up it was Unimart. Just thought I’d add that. Is there any pictures out there of East L.A. in the 50’s or 60’s?

Life's Too Short
Life's Too Short on July 5, 2006 at 4:21 am

What a great design: unique and elegant but not overstated. Too bad it has ended up as it has. Any indication as to how much of the auditorium is intact?

RAlvarez on July 5, 2006 at 12:12 am

thanks, ken mc for the great pictures. my faint memory of the that haunting interior became clear and defined once again as if it were yesterday. i can still hear the classical music playing while waiting for the movie to start.