Avon Theatre

16 E. Western Avenue,
Avondale, AZ 85323

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The Avon Theatre opened July 1946, designed in the streamlined, Art Moderne style of Art Deco, and was used as a movie theatre for nearly eight years until April 1954. The Avon Theatre was only one of a few theatres in the Southwest Valley during that period of time. In 1954, the owner could not afford to re-equip the theatre for ‘scope movies and so changed it to a retail operation.

After the theatre closed, the building was extensively renovated inside and was used as a grocery store, a department store, an alternative school and Veterans of Foreign Wars hall. Since 2006, it has been used as a reception hall for weddings and other activities. Called E & B Suenos, the building is currently owned by the Schneider Family Trust.

In May 2010, it was announced that the city approved the planned recreation of the original vertical sign of the theatre, which is the first time the city has approved replication of a classic sign. Town leaders concluded that the sign is significant to the city’s history and identity. The original white letters spelled ‘AVON’. New letters will be made from aluminium, and up-lighted so they will be iluminated at night.

The owners are replicating the original sign as part of a project in which seven Western Avenue businesses will have their facades renovated. The Western Avenue Exterior Renovation grant program uses federal Community Development Block Grant money for the Old Town Avondale buildings

Contributed by Ken McIntyre, Howard B. Haas

Recent comments (view all 4 comments)

Moviemac
Moviemac on September 24, 2008 at 3:28 pm

I grew up in Avondale..I remember my mom telling me about going to the movies there as a child in the 50’s. By the time I was born it was a grocery store,(Jeff’s). It then was closed down and opened in the early 1980’s as a arcade, which I went to frequently. I always wondered why this theater shut down as a kid, and I was hoping someone would someday buy the building and turn it back into a theater. I have pictures of the building which I will try to post as soon as I figure out how to. My parents still live in Avondale, and when I make my weekly visit, I drive down the old downtown to look at the building. There was some talk of restoring the theater as an arthouse theater as part of a revitalization project of old town Avondale, but nothing has happened as of yet.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on September 24, 2008 at 3:53 pm

Would you know what the address was for this theater or the name of the street that it was located on?

Moviemac
Moviemac on September 24, 2008 at 9:59 pm

The theater is located on Western Ave., the NW corner of Central Ave. and Western. I will get an exact address when I go down there this weekend. There are a couple of old theaters I want to check out while I’m on the westside of the Phoenix Metro Area.

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on May 31, 2010 at 5:32 am

This May 22 article says vertical sign to be replicated:

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