811 5th Street,
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Sybert’s Strand Theatre opened November 15, 1920 with Norma Talmadge in “The Branded Woman” and Fatty Arbuckle in “The Garage”. It operated as a silent movie/vaudeville playhouse and continued until 1968 as a first-run movie theatre. It then sat unused for eight years, and reopened in 1976, operating until 1996.
It is a three-story brick structure reinforced with steel containing a 2,000 sq. ft. stage, five dressing rooms, a 60 ft. scenery fly, twin box seats, and a full balcony containing 280 seats.
The building has undergone very few renovations during it’s 80+ years and retains a wealth of archival material including the original hand-painted firescreen, original magic lantern projectors, old dual phonograph turntable, four original "New York" style chandeliers, tile lobby, beveled glass hardwood entrance doors, the original ticket shredder plus old posters, signage, antique stage lights and more.
The stagehouse is hemp and still works. Two Xenon projectors operate from the projection booth. The building is in better-than-fair condition and is the object of a community-based restoration project. It has always been privately owned, the most recent for 40 years. Now under the management of a 501©3 non-profit entity.
“Would appreciate hearing from others who have mounted a similar restoration project. Major aspects of this job include: Roof replacement with restoration of ornamental cornice; upgrades for HVAC; new stage floor; new apparatus for backstage; electrical upgrades; ADD codes; new seating, sound lighting, projection, interior decoration & marquee. Estimated costs: $1.75 – $2.0 million.” The Strand Theatre was reopened August 2, 2014.
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