Korn's Bayside Theatre

39-21 Bell Boulevard,
Bayside, NY 11361

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Lost Memory
Lost Memory on July 2, 2006 at 9:42 am

Nice photos Ed. I guess that you could make a case for either building being the former theater. What is confusing to me is the 1920 build date given for 39-21/23. If the theater was at 39-21/23 why a build date of 1920? Adding to the building wouldn’t change its build date. While the florist building appears to be more modern, those yellowish/tan bricks on the front of the building might have been added at some later date giving the impression of a more modern building. You do make a good point though about the “width and depth of the structure”. The dimensions of the florist building are given as 20ft wide by 62ft deep. That might be a little small for a movie theater with 450 seats. One solution would be going into the florist and asking about the building. While your there, pick up some flowers for your sweetheart. I’m sure that she will appreciate it. That will also give you an excuse to talk to the florist. Just charge the flowers to Cinema Treasures. :)

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on July 2, 2006 at 8:15 am

I took a shot of both buildings the other morning:

39-19 Bell Blvd
39-21/23 Bell Blvd

For good measure, here’s a shot of the rear wall (covered in ivy) of the 39-21/23 building: Rear shot

I think the 39-21 address is the most likely, given the width and depth of the structure. From that rear photo, it almost looks like the 2nd floor may have been added at a later date to the original structure. The two distinct looks of the Bell Blvd facade seems to support that idea.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on June 27, 2006 at 5:10 pm

Okay, these are two different buildings. 39-19 is one building and 39-21 to 39-23 is another building on a double lot. There is no build date that I can find for 39-19 Bell Blvd so that could very well be this former theater building. This is the website for the florist:

Their address is given near the bottom of the page.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on June 27, 2006 at 4:45 pm

Maybe it opened in 1913 as Korn’s Bayside Theater and was renamed just Bayside Theater in 1914. I’ll look into this property again because Bayside Florist shows an address of 39-19 Bell Blvd. 39-19 and 39-21 could be the same building or they could be two adjacent buildings.

Warren G. Harris
Warren G. Harris on June 27, 2006 at 12:26 pm

A list of “The Lost Movie Houses of Central Queens” published by the Central Queens Historical Association in April, 2005, says that Korn’s Bayside Theatre was built in 1913. The address given is 39-21 Bell Boulevard, occupied in April, 2005, by “Bayside Florist,” according to the list.

KenRoe on June 27, 2006 at 8:42 am

Listed in the American Motion Picture Directory 1914-1915 as the Bayside Theatre Bell Avenue nr. Montauk. Looks like the theatre could have been rebuilt or expanded in 1920?

Just for the record…..
Also listed in 1914-1915 is the Hillside Lyceum Theatre, Bell Avenue.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on June 27, 2006 at 8:26 am

This is a tough one Ed. What NYC shows for this address is pretty much what you have already posted. I checked a few real estate sites and they also show a 1920 build date. I can think of two possibilities, the 1920 date is wrong or the 1913 theater was rebuilt around 1920. Wouldn’t this theater be listed in the American Motion Picture Directory 1914-1915?

3921 Bell Boulevard, Bayside, New York 11361

Block & Lot #: 06241 – 0006
Building Class: Store Building, Two-Story Or Store/Office (K2)
School District: 26 map/schools
City Council District: 19
Police Precinct: 111 (Crime Statistics)
Political Contributions: search
Zoning R6B
Building Size (F x D): 40.00ft x 83.00ft
Lot Size (F x D): 40.50ft x 88.67ft
Building Height: –
Total Gross Area of Building:
Year Built: 1920
Historic District?: No
Corner Lot?: No
Has Garage?: No
Number of Floors: 2

Units: 0

FAR as built: 1.61
Allowable FAR: 2.00

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on June 27, 2006 at 7:51 am

Here’s a local.live.com view of the Korn’s block front. In this view towards the east, Bell Blvd runs horizontally across the middle of the frame. The address 39-21 Bell would be the third building to the left from the “T” intersection formed by Bell and 40th Ave. Click the “X” on that ad box on the left side of the image to get a bigger view. The building is on the block facing us between the two blue awnings:

View of Bell to the east

The phone directory shows no fewer than 8 listings at the Korn’s current address and NYC Buildings records indicate a C/O issued in 1984 for 3 storefronts at street level with offices above. Another source (oasisnyc.org) indicates that the building was constructed in 1920, but that site does not always have to most reliable information. Perhaps Lost Memory could do a more detailed investigation into City records.

KenRoe… the Victory on 32nd Ave is listed on CT here. Please add any information you might have if you believe it to be the same as the Coolidge listing you found in the 1927 FDY.

Warren G. Harris
Warren G. Harris on June 27, 2006 at 5:53 am

I believe that the Coolidge Theatre was the original name for the Victory Theatre, which has a listing here and was situated in what was sometimes called West Bayside. I don’t know if the Coolidge name was ever actually used. It might have been adopted during the theatre’s construction and changed prior to opening.

NativeForestHiller on June 27, 2006 at 2:22 am

Thank you for contributing, Warren, and thank you KenRoe for the additional information. When inserting the address into the DOB site, it is listed as a store. I am unfamiliar with Bayside so I can’t be too specific, but when I do come across some additional info, I will be more than happy to share it.

KenRoe on June 26, 2006 at 8:36 pm

Listed in both the 1926 and 1927 editions of Film Daily Yearbook as the Bayside Theatre (Bell Avenue) with a seating capacity of 350.

There is also another Bayside Theatre listed in both these editions and it had a seating capacity of 1,800. In 1927 there is also a 1,560 seat Coolidge Theatre listed.

The 1,439 seat Capitol Theatre made its debut in 1927 and by 1930 was the only theatre operating in Bayside.