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Looking forward to driving to the Allen to see the new “Pirates” film! It has been a while since I made the “trek” from Lancaster to the Allen.
What happened to the Save the Sameric website page? As a contributor to the Save the Sameric, I would check the webpage on a regular basis to get the latest news. Still anxious for this theatre to reopen. However, it certainly seems to be taking an extremely long time to get anything accomplished. And to think it was originally suggested that the touring version of “The Lion King” would be the grand reopening attraction! Still cannot imagine seeing a “Broadway show” at the Academy of Music!
P.S. – Adult admission at Kendig is $7.00 if I remember from their opening day advertisements.
John Messick: Yes, construction has started on this independently designed, built, and operated theatre. It was originally planned to be either 14 or 16 screens, but has been reduced to 10. From the drawings published in the local papers, it looks like it will be a very nice complex. It is on airport road just past the Lancaster airport on the right hand side of the road. About a mile off of route 501 heading North from Lancaster. It was originally supposed to be open by the Summer season, but construction was delayed. I think an October or November opening is planned now. My wife and I generally travel to the Movies E-Town or the Allen in Annville before going to the Regal Manor 16. We are looking forward to patronizing the Kendig Square 6. The last time we were there, which was before the Galaxy chain from NJ took it over, the mens room was being flooded by an overflowing toilet. And the general appearance of the place was well worn even though it was not that old. So here is hoping that between Kendig Sq. and Penn Cinema on Airport Road, the avid moviegoers will have more of a choice of where to go! The Manor is too crowded, noisy, and the 20 minutes of commercials are extremely annoying!
If my memory serves me correctly, “Dear Brigette” would have been a move over engagement. I think it was intially shown at R.C.M.H. as an exclusuive engagement for a number of weeks before going “showcase.”
This shopping center theatre reopened on Friday, May 26th. It has been taken over by a group of investors from Baltimore. The name of their investment group is Diamond Theatres. According to newspaper articles they also have spent $200,000.00 on remodeling the six screen complex. Stereo sound has been added and there is “tiered” seating according to their ads. The admission prices are lower than the other national chain operating a complex in the Lancaster Co. area. They are also showing first run attractions. I hope this problem location can finally become a successful operation.
Yes, Vince, now that you mention it I do. As I mentioned earlier in this thread, my first visit to the Stanley was to see “Cleopatra”. So I never saw the theatre before the “renovation.” I just remember being more awed by the size,elegance, and magnificence of this theatre than even the Boyd. There was just so much more room in this theatre. You did not feel as cramped sitting in the loge section of the Stanley as you did in the Boyd. The balcony “lobby” was so much more palatial and roomy. I remember the ramps leading from the main inner lobby upstairs. I remember the vending machines built into the walls and the walls around them being what looked like mahogany paneling! Oh to be able to walk into the Stanley Again!
Yes! Look at Vince Youngs post from Jan. 21, 2005. In the remodeling of 1959 a curtain was installed in front of the prosenium and stretched the width of the theatre. During roadshow attractions this curtain was closed until the start of the overature, if my memory serves me correctly. Once the overature started, the house lights dimmed, and that giant curtain opened. There were stage foot lights lighting the curtain covering the screen to the rear of the stage house. I thought it was so appropriate that during the “My Fair Lady” engagement, those footlights were in the color pink. Since all the movie posters for the film were a pink background. Back then that was showmanship! Not the shove them in and move them out we have today! The Stanley was a larger theatre than the Boyd, but not as large as the Mastbaum.
Since I added some ticket information to the Boyd site, I thought while I had my book of ticket stubs in front of me I would add some for movies I had seen at this wonderful movie palace.
“My Fair Lady” = Orchestra – Sun 2PM 2/14/65 – Row P Center – $2.30
“My Fair Lady” – Loge – Mon 2PM 4/19/65 – Row A Right Center – $2.30
“Hawaii” – Loge – Sun 2PM 2/26/67 – Row B Left Center – $2.30
“Camelot” – Loge – Fri. 8:30PM 12/29/67 – Row B Left Center – $3.00
“Finian’s Rainbow” – Loge – Fri. 8:30PM 1/3/69 – Row A Center – $3.50
I can still picture sitting in this theatre and watching those huge grey curtains open to reveal the stage and another set of curtains in front of that large screen. I just wished the desire to maintain these wonderful movie palaces had started before this one bit the dust. Of course, the Fox outlasted this one and there was not much more than a whimper when that one came down in pieces. IMHO this theatre was at least on a par with the Boyd, if not even more palatial than the Boyd.
I added this information the other night, but it was during a time when the comments were not coming up automatically. So that technical problem eliminated my earlier comment to be added. So here I go again.
Yes, “Those Magnificent Men” was a roadshow attraction at the Trans Lux Theatre. It was the first time I was ever in that theatre. After driving from Lancaster to attend this “roadshow presentation,” I was extremely disappointed in the size of the theatre and screen.
My ticket stubs were for Row V, Seats 2-4-6-8-10 for the 2PM Matinee on Sunday, Aug. 29th, 1965. The tickets were priced at $2.25 each.
I would like to submit the following information for various roadshow attractions at the Boyd Theatre:
“The Greatest Story Ever Told” Cinerama – Loge Row BB Mon. 5/31/65 2PM Matinee = $2.50 Each Ticket
“Doctor Zhivago” 70mm – Loge Row AA. Sun. 5/29/66 2PM Matinee – $2.30
“The Bible” 70MM – Loge Row BB Tues. 3/21/67 8:30PM Eve show – $2.50
“The Happiest Millionaire” – Loge Row AA Tues. ½/68 8:30PM Eve Show – $2.50
“Star!” – 70MM – Loge Row AA Sun. 12/22/68 2PM Mat – $2.50
“Goodbye Mr. Chips” Loge Row EE, Wed. 12/31/69, 8:30PM = $5.00 (New Years Eve)
“Fiddler on the Roof” – Balcony Row E, Sat. 2/26/72 – 8:30PM – $3.00
Unfortunately, the earlier Cinerama travelogue films and the 3 MGM Cinerama films – “Grimm,” “HTWWW”, etc. I do not have the ticket stubs for. I was a bit younger then and did not even think about keeping the stubs since my Father was taking us during that time.
At least this gives some idea what prices for “roadshow presentation engagements” were during the 60’s.
Even if tickets today would be $25.00, it would still be worth the money to see these epics again on the super sized screen! Still better than most of the films released today as “entertainment!”
Listed below are the dates I saw other 70mm film presentations at the Original Boyd/Sameric Theatre. I only went to this theatre when I knew the film was showing at the original theatre and not one of the added on “shoeboxes."
1. "The Rose” 1/20/80
2. “The Empire Strikes Back” 6/21/80
3. “Raiders of the Lost Ark” 7/25/81
4. “Quest For Fire” 5/1/82
5. “Return of the Jedi” 7/9/83
6. “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom” 8/4/84
7. “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade” 7/15/89
Which was the last time I ever traveled from Lancaster to Center City to see any films.
Oops “2001” opened 5/22/68! So much for proofreading!
From my records, I would like to submit the following information:
“Grand Prix” was the inaugural Cinerama attraction at the Randolph Theatre. I believe it opened in early 1967.
Here is my listing of other Cinerama/70mm film roadshow engagements at the Randolph:
“Gone With the Wind” 70mm – 10/18/67-5/21/68. Then moved to Midtown.
“2001” 70mmCinerama – 5/2/68-12/17/68
“Ice Station Zebra” 70mmCinerama – 12/18/68-2/25/69
“The Shoes of the Fisherman” 70mm- 2/26/69-4/22/69
“Paint Your Wagon” 70mm – 10/29/69-1/27/70
“Hello, Dolly” 70mm – 3/25/70-10/6/70
“Tora, Tora, Tora” 70mm – 10/7/70-1/3/71
Theatre closed. And another one of Center City roadshow big screen theatres bites the dust.
From my records are the following reserved seat engagements at the Boyd:
10/20/67-1/17/68 – “The Happiest Millionaire"
1/24/68-8/13/68- "Doctor Dolittle"
11/6/68-2/11/69 – "Star!"
2/12/69-3/25/69 –"War and Peace” the Continental Releasing Corp. 2 Part Russian film.
6/25/69-8/26/69 – “BenHur” Reissue Showing
11/12/69-3/17/70 –“Goodbye Mr. Chips"
12/13/71 – 6/20/72 – "Fiddler on the Roof"
12/14/72 – 4/3/73 – "Man of La Mancha"
70MM Regular Engagements:
6/26/74-9/24/74 – "That’s Entertainment"
11/8/79-2/14/80 – "The Rose"
And there were also: "Close Encounters of the Third Kind"
"Star Wars”“Empire Strikes Back”“Quest For Fire”, “Raiders”, “Return of the Jedi”, “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom,” and “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.”
The Sameric in it’s golden days, played all the “biggies.”
“2001” did not premiere at the Boyd. It had its premiere at the Randolph Theatre on May 22nd, 1968 and played its Cinerama roadshow engagement at the Randolph through Dec. 17, 1968. It was replaced with the Cinerama roadshow engagement of “Ice Station Zebra” on Dec. 18, 1968 which continued until Feb. 25, 1969. During this time
“Doctor Dolittle” was playing on roadshow at the Boyd from Jan. 24, 1968 to Aug. 13, 1968. “Doctor Dolittle” had replaced “The Happiest Millionaire” which had a roadshow engagement at the Boyd from Oct. 20, 1967 to Jan. 17, 1968. “2001” replaced the 70mm roadshow engagement of “Gone With The Wind” which played at the Randolph from Oct. 10, 1967 to May 21st, 1968. “Gone With the Wind” then moved over to the Midtown Theatre from May 22nd, 1968 to July 30th, 1968.
Ed Solero: The “MMMMW” souvenir program I purchased at the Boyd Theatre in Philadelphia during its Cinerama showing has the Cinerama logo on the front cover under Stanley Kramer’s name. However, when I saw the movie again during its “regular showings” after Cinerama engagements, the program was the same except the Cinerama logo had been removed.
Ed Solero: The “MMMMW” souvenir program I purchased at the Boyd Theatre in Philadelphia during its Cinerama showing has the Cinerama logo on the front cover under Stanley Kramer’s name. However, when I saw the movie again during its “regular showings” at Cinerama engagements, the program was the same except the Cinerama logo had been removed.
Chuck 1231: I would like to add two theatres to your very comprehensive list. They are:
16th & Market St, Fox Theatre (2,423), 1923-1980
19th & Market St, Stanley Theatre, (2,916) 1921-1970
Wonder if Skip Hicks and his staff would like to start a small town theatre chain? There are a few still standing theatres in Lancaster Co. that could certainly use his expertise and perhaps become as succesful as the Allen. The State Theatre in Columbia, Pa, The Joy Theatre in Mt. Joy, Pa, and the Etown Theatre in Elizabethtown, Pa would be possibilities. And, perhaps, the Historic Board in Marietta, Pa is looking for someone to operate the Historic Marietta Theatre! I do not know what the condition of any of these theatres are at the present time, but from reading what he went through to bring the Allen back to life, it could not be any worse! Just food for thought!!!!!
This complex opened on May 7, 1999 as a six screen plex. The 7th and 8th theatres were built as an attachment and opened on July 21, 2000. Theatre seating capacities range from 95 to 270 according to my notes. Screen sizes range from 10'X 23' to 14'X 33'. This complex was built in what was a new car dealer’s showroom and repair garage. It is a very nice complex. Would much rather travel to this theatre than visit the 16 theatre multiplex in Lancaster, PA where I reside. At least the last time we attended a showing at this theatre, they did not present the 20 minutes of commercials shown at our local Regal 16 plex! The Hershey, PA cocoa plex is owned by the same business people. Something to be said for local independent ownership!
According to my records, the seating capacity of the original Eric Rittenhouse Square Twin theatres was 250 in each. Their seating would not have changed with the addition of the third screen because that was not developed by chopping up the twins.
I know I mentioned it in an earlier post to this thread, but I would like nothing more than see the Boyd Theatre operated as the first class first run roadshow house that Stanley Warner operated. It would be thrilling to once again walk out the walkway from the balcony mezzanine to the balcony seating sections and see the lights shining on the red curtain covering that curved screen. To once again sit down and see the lights dim as the overature to “Ben Hur”, “Doctor Zhivago,” “Lawrence of Arabia,” etc, etc. begins. I would love to travel from Lancaster as in years past. Spend the day in Wanamakers, have a nice dinner at one of the center city restaurants and then take in an evening performance at the Boyd. The last time I was in Center City to see a movie was at the “Sameric” to see the last Indiana Jones adventure. Since the days of 70mm presentations has past, there is no need to travel into Center City because I can see the same presentations at our local multiplexes, unfortunately. Last year my wife and I did make a trip into Center City for the Flower show. While there we checked out the Lord and Taylor store – what a disapointment! I think there are many film fans who would still travel any distance to see a 70mm film presentation in a true movie theatre. However, is that enough to support the theatre 365 days a year? Unfortunately, I do not think so. What got me started traveling to C.C. to the movies. My parents taking us there to see the Cinerama films and other 70mm roadshow presentations at the Boyd – Stanley – Goldman – Randolph -
Midtown and even the Cinema 19! At least some time in the future we will still be able to walk into the Boyd and see a stage show. Instead of walking past a parking lot where the Boyd was, the CVS where the Sam’s place was, and the many office buildings where most of the other palaces were. There could be a lot worse things than a live theatre Boyd. I seriously doubt whether films – especially the wide screen 70mm presentations – will ever again be shown at the Boyd. I hope I am proven wrong. But that is my feeling. Well, I have rattled on long enough. I do think if the Boyd Motion Picture Palace was promoted correctly, it could or might work. Back in the roaring days of the 50’s and 60’s they advertised the roadshow engagements in even the Lancaster papers. I know many people who traveled the Route 30 into C.C! And anyone my wife and I took to the Boyd or Sameric (ugh what a name), was more than willing to make the trip again! I am sure that is at least part of the reason why movie attendance is down now. Give the audience the proper films and the proper surroundings and presentations they will attend!
Jonathan: It is the Penna. Germans who were frugal. The Pa. Dutch call the rest of us residents “English.” The Pa. Dutch do not drive cars, have electric in their houses, or believe in any other “modern conveniences.” So, if the theatres in Lancaster Co. had to depend on the Pa. Dutch as moviegoers, they would have been out of business decades ago!
Jonathan – The population of Central Penna does not all ride around in Amish buggys! Up until the urban renewal of the 60’s Lancaster City and county supported four movie palaces in downtown Lancaster and a newer theatre – the King – that was a few blocks away from downtown that was built in the 50’s. In addition, most smaller towns in the county had their own “main street” theatres. Ephrata, PA in Northern Lancaster Co. had two theatres. The towns of Mt. Joy, Elizabethtown, Manheim, Columbia, Lititz, Marietta all had one theatre. Up until the recent downturn in movie attendance nationwide, the Regal 16 just outside of Lancaster was a box office hit. Many Saturday nights, there was not enough parking spaces in the shopping center for the store patrons and moviegoers. The Regal 16 was built in 1998. Regal purchased a already existing six theatre complex in the shopping center. After a few years, that comlex was demolished along with some empty stores to build the 16 theatre multiplex. The Kendig flourished for the families that could not afford to attend the first run higher priced theatres. In addition, Willow Street, Pa. is not exactly a metropolis. That area caters to mostly rural inhabitants. Of all areas of Lancaster County, that is probably the least populated per square mile.
P.S. Are you a resident of this area?
Galaxy Theatres closed this complex on Monday, Jan. 2, 2006. They sited mounting losses since it began operating the multiplex in Dec. 2002. They said it never reached the potential that they thought it had. Despite keeping prices lower than other area complexes. Their admission was $6.00 for adults and $4.00 for children and they showed first run movies. Other complexes are charging $8.50 in this area now for adult admissions. They had two years remaining on their lease, but the property owner left Galaxy out of the remainder. It was hinted that the theatres would be replaced with retail stores. However, the property owner said nothing is definite yet.