Stillwell Theatre

2402 86th Street,
Bensonhurst,
Brooklyn, NY 11214

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theatrefan
theatrefan on September 30, 2015 at 2:36 pm

Mintaka, thank you for sharing your memories of the Stillwell. In response to DJM78’s post, this United Skates also closed sometime in the early eighties as well, sometime shortly after the roller skating craze started to die out. I remember Genoveese Drug Store opened in the Fall of 1983, Consumers came in about 1 or 2 years later. The star logo was on the top of the theatre for many, many years after it was gone from the building, it probably was too expensive for the owner at that time to remove.

Mintaka
Mintaka on September 30, 2015 at 12:31 am

I went there as a kid..I lived about 100 yards away..I payed a nickel when I started going there in about 1942..it was a great place and neighborhood..I would guess I went there 4 to 6 times a month for 10 years..we hung out on steps along the shown wall..they were in an exit doorway not shown in one picture,but in the other one..we had a chinNing bar to do pull ups in the dirt near that side door..my grade school ps101 was a block away..I later went to Lafayette high school a few blocks from there..it was also shown in chase scene in french conection..one of my high school classmates was Sandy koufax..he probably went to Stillwell also..my e mail if anyone wants any more info..

DJM78
DJM78 on March 16, 2015 at 9:50 pm

I see the post about the United Skates logo. Does anybody know when this United Skates location closed? One of my earliest memories is seeing that logo on the building on the southwest corner of Ft. Hamilton Pkwy & 60th St. I believe that that location closed in the early 1980’s

Borad
Borad on July 21, 2013 at 2:27 am

On December 23, 1954, the Brooklyn Eagle reported that the theater was sold and turned into the Stillwell Outlet Farmers Market. The May 12, 1956 issue of the New York Times reported that the farmers market went bankrupt.

albangin
albangin on July 2, 2011 at 3:38 am

I do remember the flea markets in the 70’s….was dragged there as a boy. I remember being interested in the “oldness” of the place, would walk around and explore. The sign was still up then: “Roll a Rama”.

Bloop
Bloop on March 24, 2011 at 3:10 am

The Roller-Rama had flea markets on Sundays, circa 1976 ? 1977 ? Anyone remember ?????????????

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on January 5, 2007 at 12:11 am

Don’t they always tell you it’s against the law to yell “fire!” in a crowded theater?
http://tinyurl.com/yglx77

YMike
YMike on January 8, 2006 at 5:14 pm

The Bowling alley was on the sceond floor. The alley was destroyed in a fire that somehow did not damage the rest of the building.

EcRocker
EcRocker on January 6, 2006 at 3:43 am

Roll-o Rama was at one time a Roller Rink and a Bowling alley. My mother spent many an evening there calling Bingo for an organization she was with. She would come home smelling like cigarettes.

YMike
YMike on March 31, 2005 at 6:17 pm

When the bowling alley was put in all the theatre decor was taken out. I bowled there also. The alley was destroyed in a fire in the late 1970’s and was never rebuilt.

Theaterat
Theaterat on March 31, 2005 at 6:08 pm

I do not remember the Stillwell as a movie theater, but when it was a roller scating rink there was a lot of the theater left inside. Even though all the seats were gone, the decorative plaster work around the fire exit doors and the oval shaped domed celing(wich resembled a UFO to this ten year old) were dead giveaways to its movie house origin.Cannot say for sure if there was a balcony due to the many renovations that were done to it over the years.There seems to be no evidence of a fire escape outside.IN n the early 60s a second floor was added, probably at a great expense to the owners and a bowling alley called Bowl A Rama opened. One of the better alleys in the neighborhood, I bowled there for my high school team in 68 and 69.One day our team recieved free passes for two people to any Loews theater in Brooklyn. It was in April 68. I took my younger brother to the 46th st to see the movie The Bible. It was no 10 Commandments, but an interesting film based on the book of Genesis. The director, John Huston played Noah in the deluge sequence. Some old timers who remember the Stillwell told me the nickname of this theater was the Stinkwell. Not a good name!

theatrefan
theatrefan on July 12, 2004 at 4:46 pm

Thanks YankeeMike, I remember for years after the United Skates closed the star symbol logo was visible on the side of the roof. Does anybody remember going here when it was the Stillwell Theatre?

YMike
YMike on July 12, 2004 at 4:32 pm

Originally it was called the Brooklyn Roll-O Rama. They also held wrestling shows there from the 50’s thru the 70’s. It then closed for a few years in the early 80’s and reopened under the name you saw. It was only a roller rink under this name for a few years.

theatrefan
theatrefan on July 12, 2004 at 3:12 pm

When this theatre was a roller rink, it was called “United Skates of America”. I think Consumers took over the roller rink area as a storage space when they opened in the late 80’s. The Genovese Drug Store (now Eckerd) opened in late 83.

YMike
YMike on April 22, 2004 at 4:34 pm

I was in this theatre after it was converted to a roller rink. Originally you could see the theatre ceiling and interior walls. In the mid 1960’s they put in a second floor for a bowling alley and destroyed all the remaining movie decor.

YMike
YMike on April 22, 2004 at 1:17 pm

Anyone know if this was the theatre that was converted to a roller skating rink. (The Brooklyn Roll-o-Rama)?