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We lived on 74th Street right down from the Arion. My parents, my brother and I would go to the theater every Saturday and Sunday evening. I’m 74 now and In can still remember the sights and smells of the Arion—that funny stale air-conditioned smell; the candy booth in the rear (Raisinettes, Jujubes); the matron who got to know us; the ticket seller who also knew us (we were such regulars that she kept charging my parents for two children’s tickets, even though we were way beyond the age.
During the summer, we would stop off at Grube’s Ice Cream Parlor. I would order ice cream, because Grube would give us a drink of ice-cold water. In the ‘40s, we had no ice, so ice-cold water was a super treat.
Across the street was the United Cigar Store, with Ben Hillowitz the owner
When I was in high school, I worked at Oscar’s a toy store that shared a building with the Thrift Pharmacy, run by the Saffron brothers. I worked from Thanksgiving to January and two weeks in the summer when the toys and games were delivered. I was paid $20 per week