Akron Civic Theatre

182 South Main Street,
Akron, OH 44308

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Showing 1 - 25 of 64 comments

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on November 29, 2012 at 8:03 pm

Thanks for the clue about Street View, TivFan. I had no idea this was available. Everybody should check this out! You can go right down to the stage and use the zoom feature to get a close-up view of the organ console, and close-ups of all the decorations along the way.

TivFan on November 29, 2012 at 9:23 am

I’ve read through the commments about the photos, etc. Do you realize you can take the Google Street View into the interior of the theatre? It is amazing! I have a postcard (c. 1940’s) of an aerial view of downtown Akron which shows the auditorium building, with LOEW’S painted on it.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on January 12, 2012 at 5:02 pm

A number of earlier comments have noted the narrowness of the Akron Civic Theatre’s entrance, but I don’t think anyone has commented on why it is so narrow, or why it is designed in such a different architectural style than Eberson’s Moorish-Spanish theater. In fact, the theater’s entrance was designed by a different architect, C. Howard Crane, and it was built about a decade before the theater itself.

Originally, the current theater entrance was intended to be only one entrance to a large project called the Hippodrome Arcade, which was to have included a glass-roofed galleria lined with thirty shops as well as a theater with some 3000 seats. As told in this Akron Beacon Journal article, the Hippodrome Arcade Company was founded in 1917 by L. Oscar Beck, but the project proved to be too ambitious, and the company collapsed in 1921. Only the entrance building with its Italian Renaissance facade was completed.

In late 1926, Marcus Loew bought the property at a sheriff’s auction. Crane’s original plans were abandoned, and Loew’s Akron Theatre was built on part of the site that Beck had intended for the shopping arcade (the original plans had the Hippodrome Theatre at the far end of the arcade, adjacent to Water Street, where there is now a parking lot.) Crane’s original entrance building was only slightly modified when the new theater was built, and thus retains its Italian style.

Patsy on July 1, 2011 at 7:09 pm

I have toured this 1929 theatre and told about and saw the concrete stilts over the Ohio canal.

cinscope on July 1, 2011 at 5:45 pm

The lobby is built on concrete stilts over the Ohio canal. Mr. Loew did not live to see the opening on April 20, 1929. It contains a 3/13 Wurlitzer that is still used.

TLSLOEWS on December 29, 2010 at 8:36 pm

Of course Chuck,sorry for the typo,too bad he did not live to see this one or many other of his theatres open.As a child he was known as “Max” Loew as I am sure you know.His brother Henry was the manager of the Loews National until his death at the age of 66.

TLSLOEWS on December 29, 2010 at 5:10 pm

This theatre was going to be built as the Hippodrome,when it was still being built Marque Loew bought and finished it,Renaming it the Loews Akron.

FriarFrank on September 3, 2010 at 9:40 pm

In the early 1990s, I had the privilege of sitting in this theater and seeing the film “Awakenings.” i remember coming early just so I could see the beauty that was still so evident in the architecture and design of this building, all accented by colorful lighting.

TLSLOEWS on August 17, 2010 at 2:42 pm

Just looked at the interior photos again,very nice,good to see it still going.

Life's Too Short
Life's Too Short on January 4, 2010 at 8:30 am

Happy New Year Patsy.

Patsy on December 31, 2009 at 9:32 am

Life’s too short: Yesn and long time no see on CT!

Life's Too Short
Life's Too Short on December 31, 2009 at 9:00 am

Is it correct to state that the lobby of this building travels over a river bed?

Patsy on December 7, 2009 at 7:26 pm

tisloews: I agree!

TLSLOEWS on December 7, 2009 at 6:15 pm

From the pictures it looks like they redid the old Loews vertical for the civic or at least used the same design, in the new sign.Also the same for the marquee.

Patsy on November 9, 2009 at 7:30 pm

I was able to spend the day in Akron today, afterall, and my visit included an unscheduled tour of this Eberson atmospheric theatre by Mr. Howard Parr, Executive Directior….thank you as it is always a thrill to see one of Mr. Eberson’s atmospheric theatres!

Patsy on November 6, 2009 at 8:41 am

My tour has been postponed, not the tour..in general as they have monthly tours.

Patsy on November 6, 2009 at 6:47 am

The tour has been postponed until next spring, but I did receive in the mail today a lovely booklet that was offered in 2002 when the theatre re-opened after a massive restoration project. It is free by just calling the box office number that is given on their website.

Patsy on November 2, 2009 at 10:05 am

November 10th is the tour date this month which starts at noon and they are free to the public each month.

Patsy on November 2, 2009 at 9:54 am

I hope to tour this theatre this week!

Kiddman on May 1, 2009 at 7:48 am

There is a brand-new CD recording of the Akron Civic’s Mighty WurliTzer by a leading practitioner of the art, Jelani Eddington… I am listening to it as I type :)

Songs range from Leroy Anderson arrangements to “Totally Devoted To You” from Grease to Aaron Copland’s “Hoe-Down”, a fantastic recording!

rjeproductions.com is the place to get it online.

Patsy on October 5, 2008 at 10:07 am


This site provided some Wurlitzer/Akron Civic information. And I did locate the ED’s email address so have sent Mr. Parr a notice of my wanting a tour of the Akron Civic and its atmospheric charm!

Patsy on October 5, 2008 at 8:17 am

Lost: You read my mind! LOL! I will call the box office on Monday as they don’t seem to provide an email address.

Patsy on October 4, 2008 at 8:08 pm

“Of the three Eberson theatres surviving in Ohio, this is by far the largest and most elaborate.” I have seen the Palace in Canton, Ohio but not the one in Marion, Ohio so will be anxious to see this atmospheric and its “stars”!

Patsy on October 4, 2008 at 8:06 pm

I wonder why the name Loew’s wasn’t kept along with the marquee?