Ritz Theater

46 Washington Avenue,
Carteret, NJ 07008

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Ritz main entrance

Viewing: Photo | Street View

The Ritz Theater was opened on September 1, 1927, and was designed by local architect John Glivae. It was closed on January 31, 1965. Since closing the building has been in use as a clothing factory and later as a bakery. It is vacant in 2014.

Contributed by tc

Recent comments (view all 38 comments)

markp on August 12, 2014 at 8:52 am

On page 13 of todays Star Ledger, a very small article about the Ritz. Its official, the town has taken title of the building, and now the process of restoring it to a 1250 seat performing arts center begins. Also mentions the 6 screen movie theatre to be built nearby.

walterk on August 14, 2014 at 6:56 pm

Thanks for the update, markp. I sort of thought a deal was finalized when I noticed it went off the market recently. If anybody wants to read it, here’s a link to the article you mentioned, and here’s another bit written by the person who wrote the article I cited earlier this year when plans for the purchase were announced. It gives a little more detail but doesn’t archive well, after a couple of months one is expected to pay to read it.

Also markp sorry we didn’t get a chance to meet up, but while I was in the area last month, I spent time in the libraries in Woodbridge and Rahway, also got to meet with the town historian in Rahway. So as time permits, I’ll be posting some comments about all three Carteret theatres, along with the State, Woodbridge Theatre, and one of the old Rahway houses, along with at least one as yet unlisted theatre there, along with some pictures from various locations over the next month or so. Hope you catch them.

markp on August 15, 2014 at 3:24 pm

walterk, yeah Im sorry too. Would have been nice. I cant wait for your comments.

walterk on August 16, 2014 at 5:00 pm

markp, I should be back again in December, maybe we can get together then. I had forgotten you mentioned the 1,250 seat figure the Mayor gave for the restored Ritz until I went to see if my comment posted, which reminded me to do a little updating, at least here in the comments section.

The 1,200 capacity mentioned on the overview page was sourced from 2 articles in the old “Carteret Press” newspaper, one from the week before the Ritz opened (“1200”) and one from the day after, describing opening night (“about 1200”) back in 1927. Since then, my ongoing search for info on the various theatres in Carteret and surrounding towns has uncovered two other numbers in trade publications. The Exhibitors Herald-World issue of September 27, 1930 contained a promo for the installation of Western Electric sound apparatus which mentions the Ritz as a recent install, giving the seating capacity as 1,044. The 1945 Film Daily Yearbook lists the Ritz with 1,000 seats. So my original number isn’t written in stone.

Having mentioned 1930 era Western Electric sound projection equipment, here is part of what they were installing that year.

walterk on August 22, 2014 at 6:28 am

Workers in Carteret have started to remove the drop ceiling that hid the more ornate Ritz ceiling the last few decades. Here’s a few pictures taken by John O'Boyle of the Newark Star-Ledger.

markp on August 22, 2014 at 3:47 pm

Im sure hoping I get a job there when its done.

walterk on August 23, 2014 at 3:03 pm

Another media bit coming out this week was on NJTV NEWS last night. Only one quick glimpse of the theatre’s interior, but the piece runs about 3 minutes and talks a bit about the process, etc. The Ritz segment starts at about 22:30, for those not wanting to sit through a bunch of Jersey news.

teecee on August 24, 2014 at 9:48 am

online story posted today:


walterk on August 24, 2014 at 12:16 pm

Click this to read the article without having to do a cut and paste.

markp on August 25, 2014 at 2:48 pm

Cant believe how good it looks above the false ceiling.

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