Grove Theatre

1576 Bankhead Highway NW,
Atlanta, GA 30318

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Grove Theatre

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The Grove Theatre was located in Grove Park, a little community west of Atlanta. The Grove Theatre opened in June 1941.

Contributed by Jack Coursey

Recent comments (view all 41 comments)

steveblanton
steveblanton on October 17, 2008 at 12:04 pm

I grew up in Carey Park in the 50s and 60s but we went to the Grove Theater to the show as we called it. My older brother would take me along occasionally on Friday or Saturday nights to the late show since I didn’t have school the next day. We had a cousin, Ralph Kerr, who was an Atlanta Policeman and he worked weekends off duty at the Grove. My brother and I would get a thrill when “Uncle Ralph” (since he was much older, we called him uncle even though he was our cousin) would let us ride with him to accompany one of the Welch Family to the bank to make the deposit in the night drop. Also, I remember going on Saturday’s to the Yo-Yo contests that were sometimes hosted by “Officer Don” from the “Popeye Club” … great memories of the Grove.

steveblanton
steveblanton on December 4, 2008 at 2:08 pm

I grew up in Carey Park in the 50s and 60s but we went to the Grove Theater to the show as we called it. My older brother would take me along occasionally on Friday or Saturday nights to the late show since I didn’t have school the next day. We had a cousin, Ralph Kerr, who was an Atlanta Policeman and he worked weekends off duty at the Grove. My brother and I would get a thrill when “Uncle Ralph” (since he was much older, we called him uncle even though he was our cousin) would let us ride with him to accompany one of the Welch Family to the bank to make the deposit in the night drop. Also, I remember going on Saturday’s to the Yo-Yo contests that were sometimes hosted by “Officer Don” from the “Popeye Club” … great memories of the Grove.
posted by Steve B. on Oct 17, 2008 at 10:04am

drwdjones
drwdjones on March 25, 2009 at 7:46 pm

I grew up in Grove Park in the ‘50s & attended the Grove often. Richie Welch was a classmate at Lena H. Cox school. Every year he invited the class to a special movie. In the 5th grade, we went to see Oklahoma!. All the boys were excited about seeing a Western. Boy, were disappointed when they broke into song.

The Welch’s had another son, Cecil, who is a trumpet player and toured for 18 years with Henry Mancini and is still in active in the ATL music scene.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on April 12, 2009 at 10:05 pm

The July 12, 1941, issue of Boxoffice Magazine carried the following item: “The new Grove at 1576 Bankhead Ave. has opened. Construction of the 618-seat house cost approximately $60,000. Wendell Welsh is manager.”

steveblanton
steveblanton on April 14, 2009 at 3:19 pm

wdj, I went to John Carey Elementary School in the late 50’s. I didn’t know Richie Welch, he was a few years older than me. I do have great memories of the Grove though, also remember there was a bowling alley just up the road with real people for pin setters. Wow, that’s been a long time ago. Steve B.

redemp
redemp on August 1, 2009 at 11:44 pm

On Saturdays, it was more like six to eight hours. I remember the short comedies with Leon Erroll, Edgar Kennedy, “Speaking of Animals,” and the cowboys: Lash Larue, Tim Holt, Johnny Back Brown, Gene Autry. And really cheesy science-fiction movies. Before we reached the hand-holding stage with girls, we made spitball shooters from coat hangers and rubber bands and carried our ammunition in BandAid metal boxes (which later were to hold cigarett packages).
I had the distinct honor and privilege of playing with Cecil, “Spider” Ridgeway, and Hal Buice, the “Three Sharps and a Flat” dixieland band before the Saturday late show. We made $1.35 each and two theater passes.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on August 2, 2009 at 12:51 am

The January 18, 1941, issue of Boxoffice Magazine said that Oscar Lam was planning to build a theater at Grove Park in partnership with Wendell and Cooper Welch. Lam is mentioned again in the March 22 issue of Boxoffice which said that the new theater was under construction and expected to open in June or July. The opening was announced in the July 12 issue of Boxoffice.

I’ve found Cooper Welch mentioned as the manager of the Grove in issues of Boxoffice as late as 1957.

letray98
letray98 on August 14, 2011 at 2:33 pm

For those of you that are interested in this theater, there is a group on FB, “You know You Are From Grove Park If” Great group. Great memories.

oceanscript
oceanscript on February 1, 2013 at 12:41 pm

I grew up just down the road. I have watched many a tarzan flick as a little boy and have fond memories of walking to the “picture show”. Ralph Kerr was my uncle.

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