Time Theatre

1416 Broadway Avenue,
Mattoon, IL 61938

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Time Theatre

Viewing: Photo | Street View

When the 1911 Grand Theater was gutted by fire in 1938, it was entirely rebuilt in stunning Art Deco style, and renamed the Time Theatre.

It was operated by the Frisina Amusement Co. in the early-1940’s.

Its glossy cream-colored glazed terra-cotta facade, with two bands of maroon colored tiles flanking the center panel, featured a V-shaped vertical sign with the theater’s name on each side. The marquee, trimmed with multi-colored neon lighting, featured an octagonal-shaped clock with a band of steel behind it, very much resembling a wristwatch.

Below, the set of doors, with their semi-circle windows and curving stainless steel handles, looked like something from a luxury liner of the era.

This beautiful example of late Art Deco style theater architecture stopped showing movies in the 1980’s. In 2002, the theater was transformed into a concert venue/banquet hall, its landmark facade still in nice condition. This use lasted a couple of years before the building was closed again.

Recently, the Apostolic Center church of Mattoon has been using the former Time Theatre for presentations of Christian-themed live dramas.

Contributed by Bryan Krefft

Recent comments (view all 13 comments)

kencmcintyre on March 12, 2007 at 7:53 pm

I have a disk with copies of some Davis Cone paintings (Popcorn Palace), in black and white, unfortunately. I also have some photos from Michael Putnam’s book. I e-mailed management to see what the rules are on posting these, but if any CT denizen can give me the info I would appreciate it.

kencmcintyre on March 18, 2007 at 12:53 pm

Here is the Davis Cone painting (original in color) dated 1983 from “Popcorn Palaces”:

kencmcintyre on April 25, 2009 at 6:41 pm

Here are 1983 photos. The second one is supposed to be 1987, but I doubt if the same film ran for four years.

BobZ on October 9, 2009 at 12:25 pm

I was in 5th grade at St Mary’s School when the nuns took the school to see The Sound Of Music at the Time Theater in 1965. It was a memorable day not only to go to see a movie during school, but also we had a tremendous ice storm that night that closed school for 2 days! Glad the theater is still there and in good shape!

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on October 4, 2012 at 5:22 pm

The Time Theatre is currently listed for sale at $124,500.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on October 4, 2012 at 7:54 pm

Several sources indicate that the Time Theatre was not on the site of the K Theatre, but on the site of the Grand Theatre, which was built at 1416 Broadway in 1911. The fifth entry from the bottom on this page from a Mattoon history web site says that the Grand Theatre burned in 1938 and the Time was built on its site by Clarke, Frisina & Bianchi that year.

An earlier entry says that the K Theatre, which opened in the 1700 block of Broadway in 1913, burned in 1937 and was not replaced.

mongo5573 on November 18, 2012 at 7:42 pm

Thanks everyone for posting the pics of the Time Theatre. Does anyone have any pics of the Mattoon Theatre inside or out?

stormdog on January 8, 2013 at 3:06 am

I took a few pictures of the Time Theater when I was there this past Summer. I do have one picture of the interior that I shot by holding my lens up against the window of a door.

Here’s a link to the first photo. You can see the rest by paging through my photostream from there.


ExMattooner on January 5, 2015 at 4:44 pm

I have exterior photos of both the Time and Mattoon Theaters in 1977 (when we moved away), but will have to post them to a public site. I’ve never been able to find any online photos of the interior of either theater.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on January 5, 2015 at 8:40 pm

The “Theaters Planned” column of The Film Daily for May 21, 1938, said that the Time Theatre in Mattoon would be designed by architect Paul Leaman, but I’ve been unable to find any other references to an architect of that name, so it might be a typo. I’ve found a single reference to a Decatur, Illinois, architect named Paul Lehman, but it is from 1965.

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