Ritz Theatre

1445 Main Street,
Sarasota, FL 34236

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Ritz Theatre...Sarasota Florida

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The Virginian Theatre was opened in 1916.

Contributed by Bryan Krefft

Recent comments (view all 5 comments)

AndyCallahanMajorMajor
AndyCallahanMajorMajor on October 27, 2010 at 9:48 am

The Virginian was opened by B.D. Robinson in 1916. Initially a vaudeville house, it began showing motion pictures a few months after opening. The Virginian became the Sarasota sometime in the 20s, and then changed its name to the Ritz in 1934, at which point it was run by the E.J. Sparks circuit. The Ritz was the first of the two major downtown theaters to close. It was operated by Florida State Theaters in its later years. The building was demolished in 1968 and a parking lot was established in its place. A restaurant is now on the site. The theater’s address would’ve been about 1481 Main Street (the northwest corner of Main and Lemon).

DavidZornig
DavidZornig on October 10, 2015 at 11:51 am

Mid century postcard added courtesy of the Signs, Streets and Storefronts by Martin Treu Facebook page.

markabarclay
markabarclay on October 12, 2017 at 8:52 pm

We use to go there to the movies on Saturday am For free with 6 RC cola bottle caps in the 60’s

NamasteSuz
NamasteSuz on May 10, 2018 at 12:07 pm

Am fairly certain the correct address for this would have been 1441 or 1445 Main Street, based upon its relative location midway down the block as documented by many historical pics (directly across from Kress bldg), local property records indicating year current buildings were constructed, plus verified by Sanborn insurance map directories I own. Therefore, the above address of 1481 is incorrect, as that bldg currently houses a restaurant further down from where the Ritz was, in an historic building that was originally built in 1920 which was not demolished.

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