Mid Island Triplex

4045 Hempstead Turnpike,
Bethpage, NY 11714

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Mid Island Theatres

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From the looks of this Long Island theater’s glass and brick lobby, it must have been built in the late-1950’s early-1960’s. United Artists booked it as a first run theater for many years before selling it to an independent. It remained a first run triplex until the early 2000’s.

Last operated as a ‘Bollywood’ theatre screening East Indian films, it closed in Spring of 2006 and was demolished in Summer of 2006.

Contributed by RobertR

Recent comments (view all 31 comments)

joeybagodonuts
joeybagodonuts on April 14, 2010 at 4:17 pm

I used to go to this theatre all the time, having lived within walking distance. I remember when they had Sensaround (sp?) installed in the ‘70s for Earthquake. I think they only showed one additional movie with that technology (Rollercoaster). For that one they had the entire glass front painted up to look like a big rollercoaster.
In the 80’s, when the VCR became popular, they opened up a video store in the lobby. I remember my friend paying something like $50 or $60 for a lifetime membership.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on June 19, 2010 at 9:01 pm

“MIDWAY” was in SENSAROUND as was “BATTLESTAR GALATICA”.But they must have played at a different theatre,Joey.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on June 19, 2010 at 10:58 pm

The Mid-Island Theatre was a Prudential house when it opened in 1961. Boxoffice of November 13 said the Mid-Island had opened on the 10th. There were 600 seats in the original single screen house. I’ve been unable to discover how or when the triplexing was done, but it probably changed the capacity.

TLSLOEWS
TLSLOEWS on June 21, 2010 at 1:24 pm

Pretty plain looking theatre.

joeybagodonuts
joeybagodonuts on June 21, 2010 at 2:04 pm

TLSLOEWS: The front was originally all-glass, but they changed it to that ugly black when they built the strip mall attached to it on the left (there was originally a free-standing supermarket in that general area).

Joe V: I believe the triplexing was done in the late 80s, early 90’s. IIRC, they just put up 2 walls running the length of the theatre (from front to back), so you ended up with 3 skinny theatres.

(that just jogged my memory of when the left section of the original theatre was the “smoking” section…those were the days :–)

robboehm
robboehm on May 8, 2011 at 8:04 pm

The original auditorium was so plain that the ceiling girders were exposed. I found that odd. Although there was originally a loge area with better seats and a metal railing around it they eventually became general admission. When they split it up there were three long narrow auditoriums. If I remember correctly the beams were no longer exposed. They also supplemented their income by renting videos, which has to be unique.

FantasyFeatures
FantasyFeatures on February 2, 2012 at 12:49 pm

This was my favorite movie theater. The original/one-screen setup had love seats in it, so couples could sit with eachother. The bathroom was also located right in the back of the theater, so if you had to go during the movie, you could just walk right into the back. They converted it to three theater’s in the early 90’s, because that was the height of the movie theater business and selling out three crappy little theaters was no problem.
I remember next to the theater was “Cheap John’s,” which sold dollar store items. They had a wall of candy, and it would be 3 candies for 1 dollar. In 1993 I saw Jurassic Park there about 7-9 times and it was 3 dollars per show. I must have been to that theater at least 100 times or more in my life. You could even rent out a theater and watch whatever movies they had in their possession, which spanned twenty years or more. It is still sad to drive past what is now a 2 floor office building that, up until last year(2011), had no tenants. I am not sure why people aren’t more nostalgic on Long Island, but some things can be repurposed…

RobertR
RobertR on February 4, 2012 at 6:16 pm

Mike Abrahams who had the Lefferts and the Bethpage also operated this.

stevenstaples
stevenstaples on March 24, 2013 at 10:08 am

The first movie I saw at this theater was “Ghostbusters 2” in 1989. It was when they housed a video store. The video store was selling giant “Ghostbusters” cookies. That was a treat.

Through the years, I saw a few others here – “Sgt. Bilko,” “The Frighteners,” “Independence Day,” “Lethal Weapon 4,” “Home Alone 2,” “The X-Files Fight the Future,” – and then some indie flicks, like “Pieces of April.”

A cool little theater. It’s a shame it’s not there anymore.

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