Riviera Theatre

313 E. 3rd Street,
Muscatine, IA 52761

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Opened as the Bosten Cinema. It became the Uptown Theatre by 1933. Still operating in 1965, it was last known as the Riviera Theatre. It was demolished in the 1980’s

Contributed by Lost Memory

Recent comments (view all 4 comments)

ticktock11
ticktock11 on November 1, 2008 at 7:54 pm

Click on the blue links below this shot and you’ll find a whole bunch more of this house (and others in the area). The stage in this place got used a lot. Nice shots.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 23, 2009 at 3:10 am

A biographical sketch of the original owner of the Uptown, Ludy Bosten, appeared in the April 9, 1962, issue of Boxoffice Magazine, on the occasion of his fiftieth anniversary in the theater business.

The Uptown opened in 1929, and was located in a former National Guard armory. An 11-inch concrete floor had to be ripped out in order to convert the building into a theater.

Bosten opened his first theater in Muscatine, a nickelodeon called the Princess, in 1912. Later, the Princess was known as the Gayety. A few years later he opened the A-Muse-U Theatre, and at one time operated the Family Theatre in partnership with Carl Laemmle Jr., who would later found Universal Pictures.

Other Muscatine theaters operated by Bosten included the Grand and the Palace, which had closed two years before the article was published. In 1962, he was still operating the Uptown Theatre and the Hilltop Drive-In in Muscatine, and the Wapello Theatre in Wapello, Iowa.

weldingrod44
weldingrod44 on March 31, 2011 at 3:38 am

The Uptown Theatre was domolished in the mid to late 80,s to make room for the new city parking lot across from city hall.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on May 20, 2014 at 5:34 pm

This house was last known as the Riviera Theatre. Compare the photo of the Uptown above with these photos of the Riviera at the time of its demolition. Same building, same marquee, different name.

Our page for the Riviera Theatre might or might not be a duplication. Its description says that it was once the Majestic Theatre, and reopened as the Riviera in 1929. If that’s the case, then it must have closed soon after being renamed, if it ever existed. I haven’t found the name Riviera Theatre mentioned in any Muscatine newspaper items until after the Uptown had been renamed Riviera.

A comment on this forum page at Topix says that this house was the Uptown from the 1930s until the late 1960s or early 1970s, then became the Bosten Cinema until finally being renamed the Riviera.

This web page cites items from a 1940 issue of the Muscatine Journal & Neww-Tribune, and the part about the Uptown Theatre says that it opened on November 4, 1931. !940 being closer to the event than the 1962 Boxoffice article I cited in my earlier comment, I’d say that 1931 is probably the correct opening year.

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