Cabart Theatre

2342 E. Anaheim Boulevard,
Long Beach, CA 90804

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Cabart Theatre

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The Cabart Theatre opened in the Summer of 1938. It operated until the early-1960’s.

Contributed by William Gabel

Recent comments (view all 15 comments)

CarlHughes on April 23, 2007 at 5:43 am

This is the theater at the corner of Junipero and Anaheim that my friends and I most frequented as young kids in the mid to late 1950s until about 1961 as I recall. We’d either catch the #4 bus at Anaheim and Ximeno and ride it the 21 blocks in the downtown direction to disembark at Junipero, or we’d occasionally walk it. As I recall, 50 cents bought admission to a movie, cartoon, serial, and newsreel. As I think back now, I can’t recall a single specific film I saw there, but I know that lots of them were monster films. I distinctly recall the Commander Cody serial.

What does stand out in my mind was next door to the Cabart on Anaheim. It was a little eatery called The Railroad Cafe. It had an eliptical shaped counter that the clientele sat around. When the waitress took your order, she placed it on a train that was passing by and then your food was brought out on flatcars that followed the same tracked-route.

One of my classmates has the following recollection of the Cabart, and there’s nothing in it inconsistent with my own recollections, and I recall seeing a film with the binoculars and nails scene described below.

“I remember going to the Cabart Theater every Saturday on our bikes to watch old black and white "horror” movies and cartoons while eating milk duds and jr. mints. I especially remember one old one called ‘Horrors of the Black Museum’ and getting VERY scared when the actor looked through binoculars and nails popped out and poked him in the eyes. That one really freaked me."

In checking out that comment, I have found that the release date for “Horrors of the Black Museum” was November 24, 1959. Since the Cabart ran films that were a few months old, that would put it in the early Spring of 1960 which would have been my final semester of Junior High. That makes it highly probable that I saw this horror film at the Cabart as well as I wasn’t allowed by my parents to go to the “downtown” theaters in Long Beach until I reached high school in the Fall of 1960.

Carl Hughes

kencmcintyre on June 13, 2007 at 12:15 pm

Practically unrecognizable. There is a rather large atrium inside, which is some kind of Cambodian welcome center. I took some photos which I will post soon.

kencmcintyre on June 13, 2007 at 6:25 pm

Here is an article from the LA Times dated 11/26/59:


Thanksgiving fun for the entire family comes to local theaters Friday afternoon when Walt Disney’s festival of famous color cartoons, exciting Disney short subjects, plus the Three Stooges' feature length Fun-O-Rama, plays a special performance.

Theaters showing the all-fun program are the Paradise, Westchester; Cornell, Encino and Reseda in the Valley area; the Stadium, Torrance; Garmar, Montebello; Park, Gardena; Star, La Puente; and the Towne, Atlantic and Cabart in Long Beach. Doors will open at 12 noon with pictures starting at 1 p.m.

kencmcintyre on August 26, 2007 at 4:31 pm

Here is a 1959 ad from the Press-Telegram:

bcurran1946 on January 14, 2009 at 12:10 am

i was born in 1946 and we moved out to a address on ohio street when i was in elementry school( patrick henry). back then you could run the neighborhood without fear of being shot at, i used to spend many happy warm summer vacation days running amuck throughout the neighborhood, jumping fences,picking fruit from the neighbors trees and never once getting shot at(once in a great while a neighbor might complain).
as “raymond” mentioned the old cabart was a ball-it was cool-literally-and i got alot of nitemares from those old vincent price movies they always were showing.

cabartlvr on September 4, 2013 at 8:40 pm

The Cabart was (and still is) my all time favorite theater. I fondly remember attending Saturday Kiddie Matinee programs with color cartoons, serial chapter and a double feature. I’m looking for photos and any home movies that anyone might like to share. Seems the photo on this page is the only one in existence but perhaps somebody has something stashed away. Any exterior or interior photos or film footage from any time frame would be wonderful. Also looking for same of any other Long Beach Theaters from days gone by.

cabartlvr on September 2, 2014 at 8:38 pm

“River of No Return” & “Hell Raiders” (of the deep) played September 1-7, 1954. Final double feature of “Onionhead” & “Perfect Furlough” played final time on November 12, 1961. Still looking for photos or communication of and about the iconic Cabart.

cabartlvr on August 27, 2015 at 8:03 pm

Follow up research indicated the actual opening date of the Cabart was Oct 15, 1936. Press Telegram newspaper of that date had a titled story “Cabart Theater opening marks new advance of Anaheim Street.” Next day edition of the Press Telegram had a titled story “Long Beach’s new, ultra modern playhouse; throngs greet Cabart Theater dedication. The July 12, 1936 edition of the Press Telegram had a titled story "Work is started on movie house costing $75,000; on sw corner of Anaheim & Junipero – structure leased to Cabart firm for 15 years. Wondering if following a 15 year lease, if lease was renewed for 10 years and then not renewed again, causing the closure after final performances on November 12, 1961? Still researching the Cabart, still looking for photos, stories, etc.

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