Ritz Theatre

Queen Street,
New Bern, NC 28560

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This was one of two movie theatres within Craven County that catered to African-Americans. The seating capacity is 400.

The Ritz Theatre was operating from at least 1949 until 1955, and beyond.

Contributed by raysson

Recent comments (view all 7 comments)

Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois
Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois on September 5, 2010 at 3:45 pm

Anyone know the address, have more info or photos?

NightHawk1
NightHawk1 on January 30, 2014 at 10:26 pm

There are two buildings in New Bern’s Five Points neighborhood (the area surrounding the intersection of Broad, Queen and Roundtree Streets) that look like former African-American movie theaters. One is the Arabian Temple on the 1000 block of Queen Street; the other is located approximately 1028-1030 Broad Street. The Broad Street building has what looks like the outline of a box office in front of the present doors, while the Arabian Temple looks more like a post-World War II movie theater. Both look like former theaters but I don’t know which was the Ritz or the name of the other theater.

NightHawk1
NightHawk1 on January 31, 2014 at 3:27 pm

The Broad Street theater has been listed on CT by Lost Memory as the Palace Theatre; the Ritz Theatre was most likely located in the building on Queen Street now housing the Arabian Temple.

NightHawk1
NightHawk1 on March 3, 2014 at 7:40 pm

If the Ritz was located at 1027 Broad Street it would have been directly across the street from the Palace Theatre and behind the Queen Street theater; any building at 1027 Broad Street would have been demolished by the late 1960s to make way for a large self-service gas station (which has itself been demolished).

NBmovieman
NBmovieman on November 19, 2014 at 12:41 pm

The theater that was last an Arabian Temple, was opened as the “New Ritz” when the original Ritz theater was demolished for the expansion of Broad street from a tree lined two lane to a four lane roadway.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on November 19, 2014 at 10:00 pm

The “Name Changes” April 20, 1948, issue of The Film Daily said that the Bern Theatre in New Bern had been renamed the Ritz. I’ve been unable to discover how long the Bern Theatre had been in operation at that time.

NightHawk1
NightHawk1 on December 7, 2014 at 10:51 pm

The Ritz Theatre was most likely demolished (and the New Ritz most likely built) in 1950. The four-laning of Broad Street was part of the re-alignment of US 17 and replacement of the old drawbridge that carried US 17 from Bridgeton to New Bern. The new drawbridge opened in 1951 at the foot of Broad Street; widening of Broad Street would have been done in conjunction with the bridge construction so that Broad Street would be ready for the increased traffic.

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