Pequa Theatre

4450 Sunrise Highway,
Massapequa, NY 11758

Unfavorite 3 people favorited this theater

Pequa Theatre exterior

Viewing: Photo | Street View

Opened in 1964, this was a free standing United Artists theatre with an all glass lobby, very early 1960’s. It was a first run 70mm house and also played many adult themed movies. It was closed in 1988

There is currently a car dealership on the site.

Contributed by robertr

Recent comments (view all 42 comments)

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 1, 2009 at 6:37 pm

This house was open before 1964, and had a smaller seating capacity than is currently listed. The Pequa Theatre had recently opened when it was featured in an article in the May 8, 1961, issue of Boxoffice Magazine. The architect was Maurice D. Sornik, and the seating capacity was 600. The Prudential Theatres house featured a glass-walled facade, a two story lobby and lounge, a stainless steel and plastic marquee, and terrazzo flooring in the entry and parts of the lobby.

The auditorium featured aluminum panels on the side walls, a wall-to-wall screen, and exposed ceiling joists to which tubular downlights were attached. The color scheme was red, green, and gold. There was a railed-in loge-smoking area at the rear of the center section of seats, accessed by a truncated center aisle.

One of the photos shows a spiral staircase rising from a planter in the indoor ticket foyer. Though this feature isn’t mentioned in the text, I’d presume that it led to the projection booth.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 1, 2009 at 6:43 pm

Additional info: The January 16, 1961, issue of Boxoffice has a brief item saying that the Pequa Theatre was opened to the public for the first time on Christmas Eve, so that gives an opening date of December 24, 1960.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 1, 2009 at 7:01 pm

Correction on the opening date: The Boxoffice item says it was opened on Christmas Night, not Christmas Eve, so that’s an opening date of December 25, 1960.

The photos in Boxoffice show that the auditorium was too small to have held 850 seats. The 600 seats cited in the article is probably the correct number. It was only a two-aisle theater (if you don’t count the dead-end center aisle which served only the loge smoking section), and it had only a few more than 20 rows.

tgreils on March 25, 2009 at 11:19 am

I was mgr there ‘81…showed horrible films…leftovers from the Sunrise Mall… I left and Harrison Ford saved the day with Raiders of the Lost Ark…showing that the theatre could do the business..nice place to work

lpage on May 23, 2009 at 4:38 pm

Anyone remember when the Pequa showed “A Hard Day’s Night”? There was a huge crowd waiting. My dad had dropped my sisters and I off to go see it. Then they announced the theater was filled. Some people went nuts and there was a mini riot. Some glass was broken. Luckily my dad had waited around. We came back for the 6 or 6:30 show and there was hardly anyone there.

robboehm on May 1, 2011 at 5:50 pm

Many of the components of design of the Pequa were also at the Mid-Island:the exposed ceiling joists, the railed loge section, two story lobby. I seem to remember reading that the number of people at the final showing was something like 180.

Mrmarkus on June 19, 2011 at 1:12 am

I worked the Pequa a few times.It was fun to work there,the spiral stairs led to the booth,and another door led to several seats to the right of the booth for employees to watch.It was fun to open/close the curtains,it was the only theatre I got to do that in. It ran both 35 and 70mm movies.Steve Napoli was there for a while,when it closed he went to Sunrise Mall.The last movie I ran there was Rambo III.I knew two managers, Barbara,and Jackie,both good people.

donidarko on July 26, 2011 at 5:25 pm

Worked at the Pequa for manager Lisa Shubin briefly in 1981. Raiders of the Lost ark played most of that year. Oh my god, I remember someone changed the marquee to get back at the previous manager….Something like…“Denise sells used popcorn buckets.” What a riot. A really cool theater. Saw “Midway” an “Rollercoaster” there in Sensurround., and had a private showing of “The Car.” when no one else showed up one saturday afternoon.

Ted_Costopoulos69 on August 28, 2011 at 1:07 pm

Why is it that we can`t have this type of work now ????

robboehm on July 18, 2012 at 7:41 am

A lot of the modernity described was also incorporated in Prudential’s Mid Island Theatre in Bethpage albeit with a more box like facade.

You must login before making a comment.

New Comment

Subscribe Want to be emailed when a new comment is posted about this theater?
Just login to your account and subscribe to this theater