New Moon Theater

318 Main Street,
Neligh, NE 68753

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Opened in 1944, the New Moon Theater is a single screen theater showing first run movies. It is operated by J & J Theatres. The owner of this theater also owns the Starlite Drive-In located in Neligh, NE.

Contributed by Lost Memory

Recent comments (view all 4 comments)

matth68801
matth68801 on February 4, 2006 at 8:36 pm

the same people own the new moon as the starlight. So in the summer they close the new moon and operate the starlight drivein.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 17, 2009 at 11:38 pm

The New Moon was a wartime theater, featured in an article published in the December 2, 1944, issue of Boxoffice Magazine. It was designed in a simplified Art Moderne style by Omaha architect H.A. Raapke, a member of the Modern Theatre Planning Institute’s board of architectural advisors.

Materials used in construction were confined largely to those not restricted by the War Production Board. Raapke chose to use a stone base surmounted by glazed brick in black and cream for the facade, and the entrance lobby was floored with asphalt tile in a herringbone pattern.

Pre-war carpet was found for the inner lobby and the auditorium’s aisles, and both inner and outer lobbies received wallboard paneling with an imitation walnut finish. The ceiling of the 552-seat auditorium featured three offsets concealing indirect lighting from fluorescent tubes, and the walls were paneled in an acoustic material. The auditorium’s decoration was mostly stenciled, some of it using the crescent moon shape which was the theater’s signature. The theater’s facade had a small central tower surmounted by a neon crescent moon.

The original owner-operator of the new Moon was Mr. W.B. Bradley. The town of Neligh had a population of 1,649 at the time the theater was built.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on February 6, 2011 at 4:53 am

In the architect field above, the surname Raapke is currently missing the “e” at the end.

A recent photo by David Hunnicutt depicting the New Moon’s tower and the upper edge of its facade can be seen this web page.

The December 2, 1944, Boxoffice article with photos of the New Moon as it originally looked is now available from the magazine’s online archive. The article begins on this page. More photos are on the subsequent page, and additional text is on this page.

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