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I seem to recall another set of doors leading from the lobby to the back of the theater. To my knowledge these were never closed. On your right was the back wall of the theater, straight ahead on the right the stairs to the loge (balcony) and on your right the left, center and right aisles to the orchestra seats. The manager’s office was tucked under the balcony stairs and was tiny. The balcony was the only place in the theater where you could smoke, so there was an extra charge to sit up there. No child was permitted in the balcony without and adult.
In 1950 the chain installed a candy “cabinet”, with wings that folded in when shut, a large red Coca Cola cooler that held bottles of Coca Cola, and a counter to warm and serve popcorn. These were all positioned in front of the fireplace, and while the equipment may have changed I think the refreshment area is still in the same place. The candy machine was a thing of the past. The large oval recess in the lobby ceiling originally contained a large oval frosted glass art deco chandelier which cast most of the light up, and less down. There were also lamps around the lobby as well.
Then you went through the first set of doors and as described in previous posts moved toward the lobby doors where you ticket was taken. The lobby was totally art deco in design, furniture, carpeting, lighting. As you came in straight ahead was a faux fire place with a large mirror over it and upholstered arm chairs on either side. As previously noted the lobby dog legged to the right and the lay out is the same. Amazingly the water fountain is still there. In 1949, just to the left of the fountain, was a candy machine, the only refreshment stand in the theater, dispensing five items. This was to change in the next year 1950.
Re: the box office (Vohdin and Solero). This did indeed stand outside the entrance doors where the “M” is in the terrazo now. It was 7 or 8 ft. tall and the facade was wood, probably mahogany.
It was 3' wide, 4' deep, had glass windows on the front and sides (the side windows were partially curtained) and a door on the back.
The booth was heated and contained the ticket and change dispensing equipment, a phone, a buzzer to the manager’s office, an overhead light, and a high backed stool for the cashier. It was indeed a tight fit. You had to pull out the stool, load the ticket magazines, then in went the cashier followed by the stool.
The Manhasset was also used for private screenings of films by entertainment executives who lived in the vicinity. These were usually shown after the last show in the evening. It was also occasionally used for public events and fund raising. I recall one particular fund raiser for the planned North Shore Hospital that featured stars of opera, and stage. Somehow or other they did manage to get a piano in there. The star of the evening was Licia
Albanese. The manager had every one dressed to the nines-everyone with white gloves. It was a success.
This matinee included a newsreel, cartoon, chapter of a serial, and then a feature suitable for young people. When that ended the regular show started.
I worked at the Manhasset in 1949 and 1950. It was then part of the Skouras chain on Long Island, which included the Beacon in Port Washington and the Playhouse and Squire in Great Neck. However, unlike those theaters the Manhasset was unique for it was a single feature theater, and to my knowledge the only one on the North Shore. Monday through Friday the theater ran one show at 1:00PM,
then closed down, and at 7:00PM reopened and ran two more. Saturday and Sunday it ran continuously from 1:00PM to closing, but during the fall, winter and spring Saturday usually started with a children’s matinee.