Patio Theatre

6008 West Irving Park Road,
Chicago, IL 60634

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Showing 176 - 200 of 280 comments

CathyC
CathyC on July 6, 2007 at 9:31 am

A possible remedy for impatience – enjoy a few glasses of Dago Red while humming the tune “The Ants Go Marching.”

Quadrama
Quadrama on July 5, 2007 at 1:02 am

Yes, I have a suggestion – ask some of the business owners located on the property of the Patio Theatre site if they have a contact number for the owner(s), or leave your number with many of them including a note to pass on. The post above by Mike is quite correct; it’s not impossible, but it will be VERY expensive to reopen The Patio Theatre. The theatre SHOULD be open, as she is one of the crown jewels of Chicago! I can tell you (first hand) that it took one man alone; a dreamer, a singular man of GREAT ingenuity, practical strength, and character to bring her back to life in the first place, circa 1987 (and keep her beautiful & open, with pride for 14 years without pause). One man alone, damning the torpedoes! I wonder how many here really appreciate what that means? I am sorry if I sound hardened, but I just don’t see another of his kind coming along to bring the kind of selfless love & devotion The Patio needs anytime soon – good intentions aside.

Who is Patiomike? (I’ll tell you, as he is too modest to give you a full picture) Mike is a terrific, warm hearted, VERY dedicated man who learned (to mastery) the craft of carbon arc projection on vintage dual Simplex E7’s, faster than anyone I ever met. He saved my a** on many occasions at The Patio when other professional business took me away (I was her chief projectionist for 9 wonderful years, & Mike was my right arm – second operator). If anyone reopens The Patio – you are an idiot if you don’t try to hire Mike, and PAY HIM WELL! I’m glad you are helping folks out with some info on this site Mike – God knows you have more patience with Cinema Treasures (Re: Patio Theatre) than I do.
Louis Antonelli

Bing00
Bing00 on July 4, 2007 at 10:51 pm

Found the number. It doesn’t work. Any other suggestions?

Bing00
Bing00 on June 17, 2007 at 10:40 pm

Patiomike, what is you connection with the Patio? Thanks for your suggestion about the number on the office. Actually, I stopped by the place tonight before I saw your post. As mentioned above, I’m sad to say it looks like the marquee has been hit by a couple trucks. Most of the neon is gone. At some point all the bulbs were removed from the underside of the marquee as well, not sure why.

I am in real estate. My interest is related to some clients who are interested in acquiring some theatres to create a chain of classic cinemas.

I’ll go back and look for the number. Thanks.

CathyC
CathyC on June 16, 2007 at 12:13 am

Patiomike, That is very thoughtful of you, but I was hoping to see more interior shots of the Patio. There have been many exterior images shared on this site, but only one or two of the interior. It would be nice for those truly interested in the Patio to see what it looks like on the inside.

Patiomike
Patiomike on June 14, 2007 at 8:01 am

I don’t have photos but, I shot a brief video as a college project just before the theater reopened in 1987. Mostly pans of the interior with no script, just theater organ music. I remember the theater in its evil period. Dirty, usually closed, litter strewn… then I saw work getting done so I poked around. I met Alex and pitched the idea. Soon, I was setting up lights and lugging around a giant video camera. I don’t remember my grade but Alex was pleased with his copy. I’ll dig up the tape and make you a copy. How can I get it to you? Maybe someone can post it on this site.

CathyC
CathyC on June 13, 2007 at 7:55 pm

Patiomike, I’m SO glad that you have been posting to the site and have been able to share your experiences and knowledge of the Patio Theatre. Any chance you have any photos to share as well?

Patiomike
Patiomike on June 13, 2007 at 12:55 pm

It wouldn’t be impossible, just expensive. The building is basically sound, the organ and projection equipment is in place and should need minimal work to get going. We had a giant ventilation motor rewired a few months before closing and the boiler was recently repaired. We also had a new popcorn machine. Updated wiring and such would help make it what it once was.

kingchaos341
kingchaos341 on June 13, 2007 at 8:56 am

Keeping the original dynamics intact would be the best thing for this theatre. If they can be reconditioned or repaired I think it would help add to the unseen feel the Movie Palaces project. I have seen a boiler, and original electrical system firsthand in a like theatre(RIP), and think that even though they are bigger and maybe largly ineffecient when compared to todays technology, if they can still be reused it would help the theater to stay true to what it is.

Patiomike
Patiomike on June 12, 2007 at 7:43 am

As far as I know, the building is not for sale. Renting may be a possibility but many upgrades would be needed. Codes were strengthened after a recent incident at a Chicago night club. An electric generator sufficient to replace power during an outage would be needed. Also, the air conditioner needs to be replaced. The electrical system, while sound, is original to the building and would probably need to be upgraded. The nearby Portage Theater has been modernized this way and is a success. There is a phone number on the building’s office entrance. It might be worth a try.

longislandmovies
longislandmovies on June 11, 2007 at 10:29 pm

do we have a price???

Bing00
Bing00 on June 11, 2007 at 9:51 pm

Is the Patio currently for sale/rent?

Chrisk36
Chrisk36 on May 1, 2007 at 11:36 am

Patiomike, aware of LaSalle, been there several times and only 3 bucks for me. These are the real oldies which I love. However it’s 8 at nite and sometimes especially in bad weather not doable.
Couple years back saw Tarzan Of The Apes. I don’t drive. Hope Patio makes a comeback in some form.

Patiomike
Patiomike on May 1, 2007 at 10:48 am

Bryan, your photo is the lobby soon after it was fully cleaned and repainted. It was taken for an article about the theater and Chicago film makers that I recall was a Reader cover story. Alex, the owner, is resting his hand on the shoulder of Louis Antonelli, lead projectionist and noted Chicago film maker. He taught me the trade. The other two at the right are associates of his. Lighting all the lobby’s lights added at least $100 to the electric bill in the late 90’s so we only lit the box office’s “crown” and one or two bright bulbs in the chandelier.

Patiomike
Patiomike on May 1, 2007 at 10:33 am

If you’re looking for an inexpensive classic theater, try the LaSalle Bank Cinema at 4901 W Irving Park Rd in Chicago. A classic film+short is shown every Saturday night at 8pm. A loosely themed program runs for 6mos. starting in January and June. Admission is $5, less for seniors. Entrance and free parking is at the rear. Check the Reader for films as they are out of schedule booklets and the June edition is not ready.

Chrisk36
Chrisk36 on April 30, 2007 at 10:39 am

Correction, had a senior moment. Meant to address Patiomike.

Chrisk36
Chrisk36 on April 30, 2007 at 7:13 am

Alex, really miss this theatre. Logan is my place now for movies as I am on fixed income. Of course, now my grandkids work and pay for their own movies. If I drove I might be going to the LaGrange theatre more often. It’s another good buy but too far for me.

Also the Village Art which is closed now. I dreamed of having my own theatre that showed all the old movies yet again on the big screen. Thank God for the Outdoor Film Festival 7/17 to 8/28

Patiomike
Patiomike on April 30, 2007 at 6:53 am

To Chrisk36, Alex agonized over raising the price from $2 to $3 for a long time. It allowed us to get films sooner after 1st run but we risked losing customers to video. The studios took 50% of the box office, sometimes up front. The cost of renting the prints, licensing, insurance, heat were too much to bear. Then the A/C blew up. I still miss the place. We could have a movie on the screen in less than an hour as we left the booth in ready condition.

Skiparvid
Skiparvid on April 13, 2007 at 5:15 am

OK, third try at posting this :–(

According to my wife who lived 1 block West on Irving Park Rd, many of the locals (especially the kids), pronounced the name as,“Pay Show”. A deliberate play on the word, having nothing to do with any other language influence. Skip

Chrisk36
Chrisk36 on April 9, 2007 at 5:47 am

I am a Chicago grandmother who took her 4 grandkids to the Patio to see movies like Lion King, etc.

I remember the reason being one of economy and of course loving the big screen and single screen theatres of days gone by. Was the minimal admission a factor in it closing? Believe it was 2 bucks in the 1990’s.

Would a higher admission have averted some of the problems? Just curious.

mp775
mp775 on March 20, 2007 at 8:15 am

The Cingular Wireless banner is gone. The marquee still says PATIO RENOVATING.

BartHalleman
BartHalleman on March 11, 2007 at 3:36 am

is this theatre for sale or the building?

JimRankin
JimRankin on December 6, 2006 at 9:00 am

There is a discussion of this farther up the Comments, but, no, she was not correct. PAT-ee-o is the proper pronunciation of this Spanish word meaning ‘courtyard,’ in English context.

at1680
at1680 on December 6, 2006 at 7:17 am

I grew up in Norridge in the late 50s, early 60s. The nearest theaters were the Patio, MontClare and the Harlem-Irving outdoor theater (hard to believe there was a drive-in theater at that busy intersection!!) Anyway, my mother used to prounounce it the “pay-shee-oh” theater. Was that correct?