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I lived on Clarkson Ave right off Nostrand Ave from 1959 to 1969. Everyone is confusing two entirely different buildings. The Linden Theater was at 1260 Nostrand Ave (on the northwest corner of Nostrand & Parkside Ave) and was a movie theater until 1961. The Mardi Gras was at 1295 Nostrand Ave (on the southeast corner of Nostrand and Clarkson Ave). For the ten years I lived there, the Mardi Gras building was an auto repair shop. In one of the pictures posted above, you can see the pull-down grated door where cars entered the repair shop on the Clarkson Ave side of the building. The two buildings were one block apart and on opposite sides of Nostrand Ave.
I remember going on a class outing to the Rogers Theater in (I believe) 1961. I attended St. Francis of Assisi grammar school on Nostrand Ave. a few blocks away. In 1961, the Rogers showed the movie the St. Francis of Assisi Story. The nuns arranged a class outing to go see the movie. We kids were pretty bored by the whole thing, but the nuns loved it.
As I recall, the Kameo was the first theater I ever went to. My father took me there in 1953 (when I was 6 years old) to see John Wayne in Hondo. The theater will always hold special meaning to me.
My recollection of the Loewâ€™s Kings is a very special one. It is really the essence of what these movie theaters mean to us.
I was in high school in the mid 60s and had a big crush on a girl who I thought was the cutest gal in the world. After weeks of building up my courage, I finally asked her out. Our big night came on 1/30/65â€¦..I never forgot it to this day.
I remember picking up my date and her mom saidâ€¦.â€So you young folks are going to movies tonight.â€ I sheepishly nodded and said â€œYes, we areâ€. She said, â€œWell, you better not be going to the RKO Kenmore.â€ I think I knew why she said that at the time, but I acted dumb and asked â€œWhy?â€. She quickly answered that the RKO Kenmore was showing â€œSex and the Single Girlâ€. Enough said. I got the message loud and clear.
We then left and walked down Flatbush Ave looking to pick out a movie to see. We finally got to the Loewâ€™s Kings which was showing a movie called â€œDear Brigitteâ€. It was not one of Hollywoodâ€™s greatest productions, but it meant the world to me then and still does today.
Thatâ€™s what movie memories are really all about.
My memories of the Rialto are from my high school days in the mid-60s. The Rialto used to show all the new James Bond releases. WOW were they popular. It was the first time I remember having to stand on long lines to get into a movie. Many times you had to wait on line to get into the next showing because the showing that just started was sold out.
Dr. No, From Russia With Love, Goldfinger, etc…..those are my memories of the Rialto.
I remember the Carroll Theater and it definitely had a wrap-around marquee. It also had a small lobby with the ticket window in the right hand corner as you entered the lobby.
I recall going there several times in one week in the mid-50s to see Godzilla. I must have sat through the movie 3 or 4 times.
Great memories of the good old days.
I lived on Buffalo Ave about 4 blocks from the Congress Theater in the mid-50s and went there quite often as a youngster. I remember an open air outter lobby right off the street. The movies that were coming next were advertised here (new movies always seemed to open on Wednesdays in those days). Recessed about 12-15 feet off the street were glass doors. When you went through these doors you were in a pretty good size inner lobby where the “Coming Soon” features were advertised on the walls. In the middle of the wall on the right was the ticket window. If I remember correctly, tickets for kids under 12 in the mid 50s were $.26 (a quarter and a penny tax). You then proceeded to the back right corner of the inner lobby where you gave your ticket to the ticket taker.
Once inside, I believe the candy counter was in front of you as you entered the theater. Once you bought your popcorn, you walked to the right to enter the movie theater itself.
I spend many enjoyable Saturday afternoons in the Congress Theater watching westerns and the great monster movies of the 50s.
I hope my description will bring back fond memories to others who remember the Congress Theater as I do.
I lived one block from the Linden Theater. It was located on the northwest corner of Nostrand & Parkside Avenues. I used to play ball against the side wall of the theater on Parkside Ave. The Linden closed as a theater in 1961. As I recall, the last movie shown was “The Last Time I Saw Archie”. It was definitely a 3rd to 4th tier theater. Movies opened in Manhattan in those days. Then moved to the big name theaters on Flatbush Ave, and finally got to the Linden well after they had run on Flatbush Ave. A lot of fond memories of Sat & Sun afternoons spent at the Linden.