Batavia Theater

10 S. Shumway Avenue,
Batavia, IL 60510

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Batavia/Capitol Theatre, Batavia, IL

Viewing: Photo | Street View

Originally built in 1880 to house a music hall, it opened as a skating rink. In 1912 it was converted into an opera house and in 1917 it became a movie theater named the Vanity Theater.

In 1939 it was re-named the Capitol Theater and by 1950 it is operating as the Batavia Theater. Closed in 1953, the building served various retail uses before sitting vacant for many years. In 2010, it was transformed into offices for an architectural engineering firm.

Contributed by Bryan Krefft, Ken Roe

Recent comments (view all 10 comments)

GWaterman
GWaterman on February 3, 2006 at 5:21 pm

I lived in Batavia as a child between 1963 and 1968 — There was no functioning theatre there during those years. I can’t recall a building that might have once been a theatre either. Any ideas?

Roger Katz
Roger Katz on February 17, 2007 at 2:04 am

I guess not…my FDY says the Capitol was on Island Avenue.

Trolleyguy
Trolleyguy on August 30, 2007 at 7:54 am

When I was in the US Army in 1964, while on leave, I visited a former barracks mate who lived in Batavia. He and his father owned the old Batavia theater, which they were using as living quarters and business space. At that time there was nothing on the exterior to indicate that it had been a theater at one time, but the lobby and auditorium were still in place.

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on August 30, 2007 at 8:28 am

Originally the address was 10 S. Island Avenue, but this has now been re-named S. Shumway Avenue.

Patsy
Patsy on May 27, 2008 at 8:31 am

I recently was told about this theatre and another theatre in a town just south of St. Charles (starts with the letter G)where the Arcada is located. Any photos of the Batavia?

Bruce C.
Bruce C. on August 6, 2009 at 8:17 pm

This picture of the old Batavia Theatre was taken a year or two ago:

View link

Bruce C.
Bruce C. on September 18, 2009 at 11:01 am

Patsy must be referring to the Geneva Theatre in Geneva, IL. Geneva is the first city north of Batavia and just south of St. Charles (where the Arcada Theatre is located).

Bruce C.
Bruce C. on November 10, 2009 at 11:07 am

I recently found this old picture of the Batavia/Capitol Theatre when it was still a theatre.

View link

CSWalczak
CSWalczak on December 21, 2010 at 7:07 pm

This article indicates that that a grant has been awarded to rehabilitate the building, apparently into office space: View link

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