Lakeside Theatre

South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150

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The Lakeside was a South Shore Lake Tahoe Quonset-hut style theatre owned and operated by local Judge Rudy Buchanan and wife Jeannie since very early 1950’s.

Major movies played there in the summertime months before they would “premiere” in Hollywood … how/why I don’t know (this fact applied also to the Tahoe Drive-In in the early 1950’s. Perhaps the summertime Tahoe tourism was a test market).

The original Lakeside quonset hut collapsed under heavy snow in 1962; the Buchanans then opened a beautiful new Lakeside Theatre in 1963 which included their new home living quarters, upstairs adjacent to the projection booth!

The Buchanans passed away and new owners divided the lovely auditorium into an automated four-plex. About 2000, it was demolished and replaced by retail businesses, starting with Office Depot.

Contributed by Wm Kingman

Recent comments (view all 1 comments)

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on November 30, 2012 at 2:18 am

Three photos of the Lakeside Theatre, from 1948, 1953, and 1956, can be seen on this post at the web site of the Lake Tahoe News. The text says that the theater “… was about midway between today’s Applebee’s Restaurant and the Park Avenue stoplight….” That would place it on Lake Tahoe Boulevard very near Park Avenue. Applebee’s is at 3987 Lake Tahoe Boulevard, so the theater must have been at about 3993 Lake Tahoe.

CinemaTour has photos of the New Lakeside Cinemas (the 1963 replacement building) and gives the address as 1043 Emerald Bay Road, which is quite some distance from the location of the original Lakeside Theatre. CinemaTour doesn’t list the original Lakeside, and we don’t yet have a page for the New Lakeside.

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