Old Spanish Trail Theater

4010 Old Spanish Trail,
Houston, TX 77021

Unfavorite 2 people favorited this theater

Help us make this street view more accurate

Please adjust the view until the theater is clearly visible. more info

OST Theater 2009

Viewing: Photo | Street View

The OST Theater (Old Spanish Trail) opened in the late-1940’s. It was a second run independently owned neighborhood theater. I worked there as in usher in 1953-54. Duties also included helping clean the theater and changing the marquee. I received and additional 75 cents for the marquee. Cleaning the theater had an extra bonus. A hand held blower was used to blow all the cups, popcorn bags and candy wrappers to the front to the theater where they were then swept up. Along with the trash was always some loose change…that was mine. Some days I collected almost a dollar :) The smell of a theater after a Saturday morning kid show is quiet unforgettable. The unique blend of chewing gum, popcorn, candy and Coke will be burned into my memory forever.

Contributed by Dana Grantham

Recent comments (view all 8 comments)

drivetheost
drivetheost on June 30, 2005 at 10:28 am

The Old Spanish Trail Theatre is an important landmark along the Old Spanish Trail in Houston. Reflecting its connection with the 1920’s transcontinental Old Spanish Trail highway (St. Augustine, Florida to San Diego) the theater is one of only a few businesses to retain the OST name along the entire length of the trail. This section of the OST has fallen on hard times, and the theater is a stubborn reminder of its earlier days as a vibrant neighborhood. We’ll post a picture of the theater once the “add a photo” function is operable. John W. Murphey, DrivetheOldSpanishTrail, www.drivetheost.com

Backseater
Backseater on November 28, 2005 at 10:11 am

From 1949 to 1954 I lived at Calhoun Road and Marietta Lane just a couple of miles from the OST. You could look from our house out across the vacant lots and see the theater off in the distance, and even the old Shamrock Hotel WAY off in the distance. I went there almost every Saturday morning and saw almost all the chapters of the “Captain Video” serial. Dana Grantham (see above) probably took my ticket. I remember seeing the original “War of the Worlds” (beware of imitations) at the OST—or rather, not seeing it: being eight years old, I was so scared I hid under the seat. Many years later, when coerced into seeing the Tom Cruise remake (“Yes, dear…”) I wanted to hide again; but this time it was because the movie was so bad. Unfortunately, now I was too big to fit under the seat.
In 1983 I was in Houston on business for several weeks and went by to see the OST for old times' sake. It looked closed, but there were signs of recent operation. The character of the neighboorhood had changed considerably.
This link View link shows a picture of the OST in 2004. I don’t remember it as having a balcony, but an upper-level fire escape is visible.
Here’s to Captain Video, and good luck and good counting to all!

Dillman
Dillman on March 4, 2008 at 1:36 am

I went to the OST Theatre every Saturday morning for the Kid show..usually started about 10:45 am…then could stay all day and watch the main features…loved to just spend the day there…Mr. Foster was the manager…think of that place often, had lots of friends and loved the atmosphere…Mr Wingo, it had a balcony, seated about 100 people up there..when the lower level filled with people Mr. Foster would open it up…

rkenney170
rkenney170 on June 19, 2008 at 8:03 pm

I grew up two blocks away on Charleston St and didn’t miss a show for years in the 50’s. In the late 60’s and 70’s it was taken over by a Porno chain and called the Paris Theater. I haven’t been in that area for many years, but if you look on Google Earth, it seems as if the structure is still there.

antarian
antarian on June 15, 2009 at 5:09 pm

My mother would take me to the OST Saturday mornings when I was nine years old. It was my regular thing to do on Saturday. That was in 1957. I loved going there. It cost a quarter to get in and I’d usually buy a candy bar. I did not know the building was still there until I found this site.

sepiatone
sepiatone on November 3, 2009 at 1:15 am

The OST opened on February 15, 1947. The premier feature was “Rendezvous with Annie” with Eddie Albert and Faye Marlowe. The OST’s general contractor was Paul Marxten and the structural engineer was Francis J. Niven.

dougsmith
dougsmith on July 13, 2012 at 4:35 pm

I WORKED AT THE OST ALSO WITH MY BEST FRIEND EDDIE VETTER AROUND 1953-56-WORKED AT THE KIDDIE SHOWS ON SATURDAY-I WOULD ALWAYS LET MY FRIENDS GO TO THE BALCONY AWAY FROM THE LITTLE KIDS-LOVED TO MAKE THE POPCORN (SO GOOD)AND FREE-MR FOSTER ALWAYS LET ME COME AT NIGHT TO SEE THE SHOWS FOR FREE-EVEN AFTER I QUIT WORKING THERE I STILL ATTENDED THE THEATER AND ENJOYED GETTING AN ICE CREAM CONE NEXT DOOR-I CAN’T BELIEVE AT 72 YEARS OLD I STILL REMEMBER THE FUN I HAD THERE

dougsmith
dougsmith on July 13, 2012 at 4:35 pm

I WORKED AT THE OST ALSO WITH MY BEST FRIEND EDDIE VETTER AROUND 1953-56-WORKED AT THE KIDDIE SHOWS ON SATURDAY-I WOULD ALWAYS LET MY FRIENDS GO TO THE BALCONY AWAY FROM THE LITTLE KIDS-LOVED TO MAKE THE POPCORN (SO GOOD)AND FREE-MR FOSTER ALWAYS LET ME COME AT NIGHT TO SEE THE SHOWS FOR FREE-EVEN AFTER I QUIT WORKING THERE I STILL ATTENDED THE THEATER AND ENJOYED GETTING AN ICE CREAM CONE NEXT DOOR-I CAN’T BELIEVE AT 72 YEARS OLD I STILL REMEMBER THE FUN I HAD THERE

You must login before making a comment.

New Comment

Subscribe Want to be emailed when a new comment is posted about this theater?
Just login to your account and subscribe to this theater