Park Theatre

2301 Magnolia Avenue East,
Knoxville, TN 37917

Unfavorite No one has favorited this theater yet

Park Theatre

Viewing: Photo | Street View

I think the Park/Studio One became a media production centre in 1980. Please update if you have any information on this theatre.

Contributed by JackCoursey

Recent comments (view all 10 comments)

Will Dunklin
Will Dunklin on July 5, 2005 at 5:00 am

The Park was torn down in the summer of 2002. It had been empty for several years with its roof structure exposed to the elements. The last tenant was a carpet warehouse operation which didn’t last too long. The Park occupied a corner zero-lot-line parcel with no parking: a death nell in a town in a marginal neighborhood.

rogers
rogers on March 6, 2006 at 2:42 pm

The Park/Studio One was operated by Knoxville-based Simpson Theatres, which also operated the Riviera Theatre, The Capri, The Capri 70, the Terrace Tap House Theatre and the Twin-Aire Drive-In —all in Knoxville, TN.

tntim
tntim on July 6, 2006 at 7:24 am

The Park theatre opened October 1, 1938 with the movie “Vivacious Lady”. The $30,000 theatre was built and operated by the Wilby-Kincy chain. It was a white cinder block building set back from the street with a small lawn in front. The two aisles auditorium was in the art moderne style with 26 rows of seats and 23 seats in each row for a capacity of 584.

Through the sixties and early seventies ABC Southeastern Theatres operated the theatre playing hold overs from the Tennessee, or as a road show house for big Disney films. I remember going there to see “Mary Poppens” and “The Sound of Music” for the first time.

In 1975 ABC remodeled the theatre and changed the name to The Studio One in an attempt to try to make the theatre more upscale. They repainted the entire building and took out 3 rows of seats to enlarge the lobby and concession area. Although they played some first run films, the neighborhood fell into a sharp decline and Plitt Theatres (which had bought out ABC) closed the theatre on June 10, 1982 after the final showing of “Some Kind of a Hero”.

As a side note, from the mid sixties to the mid seventies Knoxville was mostly a two theatre chain city. ABC operated the Tennessee and Park Theatres also the Family, Knoxville, and Cinema Drive-Ins. They later opened the Westown Theatre in 1972. The local based Simpson Theaters Chain operated the Riviera, Capri Cinema, Capri-70 and the Capri Terrace theatres, also the Twin-Aire, River Breeze, and Chapman Highway Drive-Ins.

skokee
skokee on August 25, 2006 at 8:54 am

The Loew’s Park and a sister theater called the Granada on the West Side showed the same features at the same time, primarily MGM, Paramount, and Columbia pictures, just after they left either the State, Stillman, or Ohio and just before they went on their neighborhood runs. The Hippodrome played films from Warner Bros. and 20th Century Fox. Palace played RKO films, possibly Universal.

Will Dunklin
Will Dunklin on August 25, 2006 at 9:03 am

Rick, are you sure you’ve got the right theatre? This is Knoxville, Tennessee’s Park Theatre. I don’t think it was ever part of the Loew’s circuit, as Loew’s got out of the Knoxville market in the early ‘20’s.

skokee
skokee on August 26, 2006 at 10:29 am

My mistake, Will. I thought these were references to a Park Theater in Cleveland, Ohio. Sorry. Rick

bbrown1
bbrown1 on July 5, 2007 at 6:32 pm

I lived in Knoxville in the 70’s, and for much of that time lived in East Knoxville, only a few blocks from the Park/Studio One. At that time, it was the only indoor theatre in Knoxville that wasn’t downtown or in West Knoxville along Kingston Pike, and also the last neighborhood theatre. I saw quite a few movies there, including HAROLD AND MAUDE. I am sad that the building is gone.

Bob Brown

BannerJohn1954
BannerJohn1954 on December 9, 2007 at 12:07 pm

The very first movie I ever saw in a theater was ‘the Tingler’ with Vincent price,at the Park Theater.This was in 1959 and I was 5 years old. It was a typical William Castle film,and I remember a stretcher in the lobby in case someone fainted,and they had a row of seats blocked off. Just before the film began,a guy came in with a small wire cage and sat in the middle of that row. I heard that some seats were wired to give a mild shock but mine wasn’t.
I saw many films there over the years,as I lived in East Knoxville (Burlington) myself. I saw PATTON there.
The theater would still be standing today if not for Knoxville’s mayor at the time,Victor Ashe (well known for tearing things down). The building was being negotiated for by someone willing to restore and use it,when Mr Ashe ordered it demolished. A few hours with a bulldozer destroyed years of memories for myself and many others. Thanks,Victor.

bbrown1
bbrown1 on June 14, 2009 at 7:38 pm

At the link below is a small photo of the Park Theatre from about 1947:

View link

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on October 1, 2009 at 2:19 pm

THE JOHN HUSTON FILM … THE BIBLE… WAS STILL RUNNING AFTER A VERY LONG RUN. IT WAS RESERVED SEATING ONLY. TICKETS WERE $ 2.00 A SEAT FOR EVENING SHOWS AND $1.50 FOR MATINEES. YOU HAD TO CALL FOR SEATS. WOW. THIS WAS SEPT. 25 1967.

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