Springlake Cinema

N. Martin Luther King Avenue at N.E. 38th Street,
Oklahoma City, OK 73111

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Roy Stanton was a visionary who built his Springlake Amusement Park to be more than just another fun park. Besides the usual thrill rides, fun house, and side shows, Stanton’s vast park included a colossal swimming pool, an enormous ballroom, and a unique ‘Cinema’.

Since Springlake Cinema was just one of many park attractions that operated during warm months, exact opening dates are hard to pinpoint, but some old timers place an opening date as early as 1922.

Springlake Cinema was designed in a fantasy Egyptian styling, and offered the luxury of refrigerated air. Lobby walls were lined with cast iron single view movie machines. Some had flip cards that created 3-D moving images, others were continuous loop movie reels. Also included were elaborately animated gumball machines.

A roving cinematographer took motion pictures of patrons as they rode the many rides, enjoyed antics of the fun house, or swam in the chilled pool. These films were quickly developed and shown inside the cinema. Patrons rushed in and gladly paid a five cent admission price in order to see themselvs up there on the silver screen, along with selected short subjects direct from Hollywood. Nickel ticket prices remained the same until the theatre was converted (around 1949) to an indoor joy ride called Laff in the Dark.

Contributed by Mrs. Settinhen

Recent comments (view all 5 comments)

missmelbatoast
missmelbatoast on September 24, 2007 at 9:20 am

Many vintage photos of this fabulous amusement park can be seen on below link -
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and here is what the location looks like today as a college campus-
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missmelbatoast
missmelbatoast on September 24, 2007 at 3:30 pm

Here is a shot of the former Cinema after conversion to “RIDE ‘N LAFF”,
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In this reverse negative view the former Cinema can be seen upper photo right, note the stage house still remained,
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missmelbatoast
missmelbatoast on October 18, 2007 at 2:57 pm

Limited information is given on this ssubject, along with a photo of the 1928 hand carved (Pennsylvania Toboggan) wooden carousel -
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missmelbatoast
missmelbatoast on October 18, 2007 at 3:53 pm

B&W 1940’s snapshot of former cinema shortly after conversion to an indoor thrill ride -
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Kodacolor view taken in mid 50’s -
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Assorted merry snapshots -
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missmelbatoast
missmelbatoast on April 30, 2011 at 10:20 pm

I have been told that this building was originally a small cinema before conversion in the early ‘40s into Ride 'N Laff thrill ride (courtesy Springlake Photo Collection). This has not been confirmed.
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In 1922 architects Tonini and Bramblet designed the Springlake Pavilion (AKA-Faryland, Casino) a combination cinema & ballroom. This c1930 image of the Faryland comes courtesy of Springlake Photo Collection.
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