Tower Theatre

815 E. Olive Avenue,
Fresno, CA 93728

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Tower Theatre

Viewing: Photo | Street View

The Tower Theatre opened with a premier showing of the film ‘Balalaika’ for a private party of local dignitaries, Fox Theater executives, and guests on December 14, 1939.

Co-hosts for the event were developer and owner A. Emory Wishon (1882-1948) of San Francisco, a prominent California hydroelectric executive, and Charles P. Skoura of Los Angeles, president of Fox West Coast Theaters. The theater opened its doors to the film-viewing public on December 15, 1939. The double feature program included ‘Dancing Coed’ and ‘Henry Goes Arizona.’

A complete restoration of the exterior facade, ongoing tenant improvements in the retail wings, and modifications to allow the adaptive reuse of the theater auditorium for the performing arts have brought new life to the theater and to the surrounding Tower District. The area has since become a lively collection of restaurants, pubs, jazz clubs, and antique shops, with the highly successful ‘Tower Theatre for the Performing Arts’ at its center.

In 1991, the dramatic theater rehabilitation was honored with a California Preservation Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement in Restoration, and with an Award of Honor from the San Joaquin Chapter, American Institute of Architects.

Contributed by Paul Salley

Recent comments (view all 25 comments)

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on July 23, 2007 at 5:36 pm

Here is an interior photo.

kencmcintyre on November 29, 2007 at 7:51 pm

If you have an extra 4.2 million lying around, it’s yours:

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on April 5, 2008 at 7:33 am

This is a more recent photo.

drb on May 11, 2010 at 12:28 pm

The tower, especially the sparkle-y ball on top, looks a great deal like another S. Charles Lee marquee, the Alex Theatre in Glendale, which was added to that theater a year after this one was built.

TLSLOEWS on May 11, 2010 at 12:51 pm

Very nice looks great all lit up a night.

TLSLOEWS on May 11, 2010 at 12:51 pm

Very nice looks great all lit up a night.

William on May 11, 2010 at 1:54 pm

-DB, Don’t forget the Academy Theatre in Inglewood, CA also has a neon sparkle ball too.

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