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Excuse me; Oscar’s daughter was Roberta, not Barbara (confused her with another childhood flame).
Oscar Brotman was the owner of the Avaloe in the 40’s and 50’s; I went to Brentano School with his daughter Barbara from 1945 thru 1952. They always impressed me as a nice Jewish family with all the latest material benefits and treated me as one of the family (at least in comparison with the non-Jewish second-generation white immigrant families of the neighborhood). I used to get a kick out of Oscarâ€™s father, an old guy with a Yiddish accent who took tickets at the door. If I bought popcorn inside the theatre he did not say anything, but if I brought in a bag of that really delicious butter popcorn from the store next door he would always say, â€œDonâ€™t get any on the floor.â€ Those were the days before the expressway when Fairfield went all the way to Diversey. I also remember that the Avaloe was one of the first businesses around that had a big â€œAir Conditionedâ€ sign on it with icicles in the summer. My love of movies, especially Westerns, was solidified by the incessant movies they showed: a double-feature with brand-new movies plus newsreel and cartoons every Saturday plus brand-new fare on Sunday. They played over and over so if you came in during one feature you could stay for the next run. Good way to get rid of your kids for the weekend too. Those were the days.