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Dunkirk Evening Observer, April 2, 1945:
Dunkirk Men Lease Theater in Brocton
D. Purdy Monroe and Arthur Sandberg of Dunkirk have leased the Gem Theater on Main street in Brocton and will take over management of the motion picture house on May 2.
The name will then be changed to Lake theater.
Meanwhile, extensive remodeling, both interior and exterior, will be done by David Monroe.
I could not find an address.
I see that the “Wintergarden”, which what I knew this place as, opened on October 25, 1926. It lasted into the 1980s. (I saw two movies here: Close Encounters Special Edition, and Battlestar Galactica; in the 1979/1980 timeframe.)
I think the sporting goods store mentioned above was “Walt’s”.
Saw a movie here this week. They seemed kind of understaffed. The county fair was in town, and they may not have expected the large crown of 30-40 people to come in to watch movies instead of see the popular grandstand event at the fair.
No real improvements to the theater in the last three years. Half built displays on the right hand side when you walk in the front door. It sure would be nice if they fixed the place up, but I understand why they don’t sink large amounts of money in the place.
Last time I drove past (about two weeks ago) I saw a crew working on the roof. That suggests the owners may want to put something in there. Just what, I don’t know.
I have heard rumors of a new (how long ago it happened to justify being called “new”, I don’t know) owner, with at least some interest in showing movies again. But that is third hand information, so I can’t vouch for its veracity.
Patsy: I may have posted on facebook. The church no longer owns the building, it is owned by the owner of Kettle & Keg. As far as it becoming a cinema again, I’m doubtful that that will ever happen. Last I heard Payne was seeking to take the slope out of the floor.
When I ate at K & K, Payne was usually there for the lunch rush, then left by 2 or 3. But that has been at least 2 years since I ate there that early.
Restrooms have larger issues. 2 years, and no stadium seats, so I guess thats not going to happen.
This theater opened on December 25, 1970 by the Dipson chain. It was a “new” style of intimate cinemas that was “sweeping the country” called a “mini”. It seated 350.
I believe I have found the clock from the Regent. Or something similar. It is in the Dunkirk Historical Museum, Washington Ave, on the main floor.
This description sounds like a theater I went to a few times during the summer of 1984. Admittedly, I thought the multiplex I went to was on the other side of the off-ramp. (I doubt it was the one on the other of Federal Street.)
Change in status. The drive-in is now destroyed. On the evening of 11-14-11 a severe storm that spawned two tornadoes moved through the area. While I don’t know if a tornado hit the drive-in, there was one within 3-4 miles. The screen is now a crumpled mass of metal.
I have two memories of this place. First is that some rooms had obstructed view seating. The other was when the HVAC started smoking, and forced an evacuation. Still, I saw 100-200 movies here, so have a soft spot in my head for this place.
This is a (?!) case where, even if the theater was still standing, you couldn’t see it from the street view photos. While its address was 1170 central (The whole D&F Plaza shares the address), you be better able to see it from Millard Fillmore Drive or Main Street. Well, you would have been, had it still existed.
Garbage in, garbage out. The street view photo is inaccurate here due to the address being incomplete. The result is the street view pictures are off by a mere 4.5 miles. As a side note, the entrance to the drive in was (is) not actually on Route 5, although it is about 50 – 100 from it. Don’t know how to “fix” the address to make it correct, or more correct, anyway.
The last I heard it is owned by the guy who own Kettle & Keg and Walleye Willies, both Lake Shore Drive, East in Dunkirk. I saw someone working on the place last summer with a dumpster out front for a day.
It’s been open a year now, and still needs work. The restrooms have some issues. Some of the video games have severe playability issues. At least one of the screens has large spots on it.
Last time I drove past the Screen housing has started to look really bad. I wonder how long until the structure collapses.
Minstrel – I compared photo on your site to google earth and my memory of that block, and that photo is not a current representation of the area. The building with the strand sign on it is not there, and has not been there some 17 years. (Search Google on the address, and it will show you the hole, and the empty lot behind where the auditorium was.)
The Triphammer theater is long gone as well. Hoyt’s fixed it up in the 1996 or so, turned it into a multi-cinema. I saw a couple of movies there before moving away. By 2000 it was closed again, and is now a hotel.
The block that this house was on has recently undergone some changes. As a result, only one building that shared the block with the Capitol remains standing. All have been lost in less than 45 years.
Advertised recently that they have a 3d screen now. And during a recent weekend, the owner stated that the two largest rooms are going to be adjusted to being stadium seating. (I was not there for that, so at this time, I would only call this a rumor. But I heard it from a trustworthy source.)
So it cut off the original edit, any way. :–/
Cinema was built before the stadium craze. Last movie I saw there was 12/31/99 when it was General Cinemas. It was not stadium then. I suspect Cinema Tour is wrong. They even have a photo of a room there, and it didn’t have stadium seating. While money could have been dumped into the place, I doubt it.
AMC would have also spent money by now to fix their aged cinema in Amherst. (I haven’t been there in a few years, so maybe they have.) And when Regal took it over, I think that’s when they decided to tear down and rebuild. I was out of the area for a while, and when I was in town, I went to the Quaker Crossing as it was closer, and had stadium seating. Still do, in fact, but last flick I was was at Galleria.
Still suffers from the same issues that bothered me when it first opened. The seating is still not staggered, and there is no real slope to the rooms. (Unless, by staggering, you offset the seats by 1.2 inch in random directions from one row to the next.) When I saw a movie here recently, a woman sitting 3 rows in front of obscured a portion of the screen. Still can’t rate this theater as a worthy place to see a movie.
The theater is reopening today, Dec 18, 2009, under new management. According to the local paper, it is actually old management, the guy who built the theater in the first place. He claims better seats and lower prices.
Glenwood Movieplex Coroporation
Kevin Mullin, Owner
118 Oxyoke Drive
Rutland, VT 05701-9301
The paper also states that he is opening locations in Painted Post and Hudson, NY.
There are rumors of a new owner, but I have been unable to confirm anything yet. However, Over the last week or so I seen a dumpster out in front, and 2-4 cars parked in front of the theater; along with interior and some exterior lights on.
Lets hope that if someone is fixing this place up, they do a decent job, including staggering the rows. (When built, the ‘designer’ set the seats up so that every seat was aligned from front to back. Never a good seat in the house.)