Cine Capri

4720 Banning Avenue,
White Bear Lake, MN 55110

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Cine Capri 2011

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Opened as the 600-seat White Bear Theatre in 1939.

The theatre was later remodeled and reopened as the Cine Capri in 1968. In 1975 it ran the exclusive St. Paul engagement of “Jaws”. It closed for good in the late-1970’s and was converted into retail space.

Contributed by Chuck, Kirk J. Besse

Recent comments (view all 3 comments)

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on January 11, 2010 at 5:34 pm

This should be Banning Avenue.

KJB2012
KJB2012 on February 16, 2010 at 6:48 pm

This theatre was remodeled and reopened as the Cine Capri in 1968. In 1975 it ran the exclusive St. Paul engagement of “Jaws”. It closed for good in the late 70s.

nelsonexpert
nelsonexpert on August 25, 2010 at 6:51 am

More and more I have to track down theatres on C.Treasures to refute the erroneous information being given.

The White Bear Theatre opened Aug 4, 1939. The operator was Dave Ratner. Franklin Amusement Co. NEVER had theatres in White Bear Lake. In 1940, Ratner sued his landlord, Mrs. Jessie Jensen, who operated the other theatre in town – his claim being that she was deliberately overbooking product to keep it away from Ratner. Ratner sold in 1947, there were at least 2 more owners until 1960. Somewhere around ‘60 the theatre closed. A trade paper item in 1962 said the seats were being taken out and put into the Homewood Theatre in Minneapolis. The theatre reopened with the name Cine Capri on Mar. 22, 1967 with “Dr. Zhivago” followed by “The Sound of Music” on 4-26-67. Rockers were put in, and the remodeling job was by Liebenberg, Kaplan and Glotter. The top ticket then was $2.00.

In 1971 the local Carisch circuit acquired the two White Bear Lake theatres (the other was originally the Avalon, later renamed White Bear Cinema). With the aid of a local bank (according to an article in the St. Paul newspaper), Carisch started bidding wars for 1st run exclusives in the St. Paul side of the metro. Competitors were General Cinema (Har Mar), UA (Maplewood Mall) and Plitt (downtown St. Paul and Plaza in Maplewood). Carisch won some of the bids, with the standout being “Jaws” (6/20/75-2/5/76); “The Omen” (6/25/76, exclusive only the first 6 weeks); “Black Sunday” (4/1/77) and others.

The Cine Capri closed 9/14/77 with “Smokey and the Bandit”. The seating capacity was not 298 but probably double that in its pre-1960 time. In the 1970’s, articles in newspapers and the trades gave the capacity as either 444 or 450 (bear in mind the rocker seats). The street address was 521 3rd St. (Banning Ave. and 3rd St.). It has been converted to retail.

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