Palace Theatre

791 Broadway,
Gary, IN 46402

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Y. & W. Management Corp.

Architects: John Adolph Emil Eberson

Styles: Atmospheric, Renaissance Revival

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News About This Theater

Palace Theatre

John Eberson designed the Palace Theatre in a Atmospheric style, seating originally nearly 3,000. The theatre opened in November 1925 with live stage shows and vaudeville acts in addition to motion pictures. It was equipped with a Kilgen 3 manual/9 ranks Wonder organ.

Operating for decades as one of Gary’s grandest entertainment venues, the cavernous Palace Theatre slowly slid into decline, closing in 1972.

Since then, several attempts have been made to bring the theatre back to life, but unfortunately, none have been successful. Meanwhile, this sadly forgotten Eberson designed treasure has fallen into major disrepair, with substantial water damage to its auditorium and its Renaissance-style exterior crumbling away. A precarious-looking 1950’s or 1960’s era marquee appears in danger of falling off at any time.

Though in danger of being lost, the Palace Theatre would make an ideal performing arts or classic films venue, for anyone with enough interest, and more importantly, money, to put into restoring it.

Contributed by Bryan Krefft

Recent comments (view all 100 comments)

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 17, 2018 at 9:26 pm

The video wouldn’t run for me, but it might be just a video of a high school in Gary anyway. The makers of the video have a YouTube channel, but I’ve been unable to find any among their hundreds of videos that is about the Palace. It would probably be part of their LOSTtoTIME series, and their Playlists page says there are currently 83 videos in that series. I haven’t scrolled through them to see if the theater is there, though I did see their video for the Town Theatre in Highland, Indiana, which I’ve linked on that theater’s page.

YouTube does have a few videos of the Palace by other users, though. Just Google Palace Theatre Gary IN.

RickB
RickB on March 18, 2018 at 3:50 am

The video is mostly a talking-head interview. It has a few seconds of the Palace toward the end (the whole thing is less than two minutes).

DavidZornig
DavidZornig on March 18, 2018 at 5:59 am

OK, I’ll just leave it here. I did remove my duplicate post though.

Broan
Broan on August 24, 2021 at 7:59 am

Several good early photos here: https://archive.org/details/exhibitorsherald24unse/page/n391/mode/2up?view=theater

jalbertsgriffen
jalbertsgriffen on April 16, 2022 at 3:23 pm

Question for everyone. I am visiting in the Chicago area, and would like to go and see the Palace Theater. How safe is it to go into the neighborhood during the daytime? Or am I taking my life into my hands?

Trolleyguy
Trolleyguy on April 18, 2022 at 8:37 am

jalbertsgriffen I’m familiar with Gary. The area where the theatre is is fairly desolate. You can see everything there is on Google Streetview without even venturing there. If you do, stay in your vehicle and be aware of your surroundings. Just like any unfamiliar urban area.

jalbertsgriffen
jalbertsgriffen on April 20, 2022 at 10:27 am

So Trolleyguy, you’re saying there’s no way of going in and going through it?

jalbertsgriffen
jalbertsgriffen on April 21, 2022 at 3:26 pm

Went and saw the Palace today. There is absolutely nothing remotely repairable about that building. Multiple trees growing out of the walls and roof. The whole place looks like it is about to collapse into a heap.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on April 21, 2022 at 9:55 pm

Please post any pictures that you took.

jalbertsgriffen
jalbertsgriffen on April 23, 2022 at 5:11 am

I didn’t take any pictures. I intended to, but the neighborhood appeared so threatening that I didn’t feel it was wise to get out of the car, even in broad daylight.

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