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Just adjusted the street view. The red sign you can see in the photo was part of the marquee. The red house is not part of the theater, but the concession stand in in the background.
I saw a lot of good movies at that theater. I remember the mosquitoes being so bad that we had to burn little coils of insect repellent called Pik just to survive the movie. There was, of course, the standard playground beneath the screens, but we were never allowed to venture to such wondrous environs.I’d love to find a photo of that old gem.
When I was a boy, the Gil was strictly an African American theater.
There are some awesome aerial views of this theater (and many others) at Historicaerials.com. According to the photos on that sight, this theater was still in existence as late as 1979.
My father-in-law tells me that his father and uncle worked circa 1934-35 at the Liberty Theater. They sold popcorn, peanuts, cleaned the theater and handled the films.
Outstanding! I love this place! As many times as I’ve passed through Merryville, I never took a picture of the old Sabine, but Lost Memory has uncovered an excellent photo! That is the Sabine Theater and hopefully it will be restored. Great info from Boxoffice from Joe, too.
If you go to Google Earth and take a view from Main street looking west on Hennigan street (I appoligize for misnaming the street as Herrigan) you can see the side of the old theater about a block west of the intersection of Main and Hennigan.
Don’t mean to cause a controversy, but I think the photo of the screen with the crown on it may have been of the old King Drive-in on South Lamar. I don’t recall the Linda Kay having such a fancy screen and they didn’t do much dozer work to tear down the Linda Kay.
The Starlite and the King were right next to each other on South Lamar as I recall. During the late 1970’s these theaters (I’m not certain they were both still open) showed R rated, X rated films. I was a Police Officer working that area at the time.
The sign for this old theater was still standing long after the actual theater was gone. It stood in the field that is now between the Police substation and the big church on the south side of Hwy 175 and to the west of Jim Miller road.
The theater did indeed show adult films and they were visible from Silverado St. and from several of the homes nearby. The old concession stand is still there, painted red, but nothing else remains.
Somewhere, I’ve got a photo of this old gem. Saw many classics there like How the West Was Won. My Grandfather told of going to the theater as a boy when it showed silent movies. They would get enough money to get one of them inside and he would go to a side door (he recalls it as a screen door), and let the others in too.
My father remembers paying a dime for admission.
This was in fact a Quonset Hut. I remember running my hands against the outside walls after we had parked and were walking to the theater. There were Quarters inset into each of the front doors just above the key holes.
I saw many films in that place, but the only one that comes to mind is The Flight of the Lost Balloon. They actually issued each film- goer a pretend air-sickness pill as you entered the auditorium!
My cousin and I went to see Spartacus at the Nona. We stayed and watched the film three times in the one day, carefully rationing popcorn and soda.
When you entered the theater, the concession stand was to the right and just beyond that you turned right into the actual theater. I recall heavy maroon curtains blocking the entrances into the auditorium.
I also saw The 300 Spartans at that theater. Good memories.