Garman Opera House

116 E. High Street,
Bellefonte, PA 16823

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Built in 1887 as an opera house, the Garman Opera House was converted in the 1930’s to a movie house. It closed in the 1960’s and became a warehouse. It became a movie house again in July 2000 showing art, foreign, and first run films. The Garman Opera House closed once more in October 2008, and was put up for sale.

Demolished in late-2013/early-2014 by a developer to build new residences. Despite demolition, Preservation PA placed it on its ‘At Risk’ list to make a legal point.

Contributed by ARKAT, INC

Recent comments (view all 6 comments)

nrh
nrh on March 9, 2006 at 8:01 am

UPDATE from Garman’s website:
Construction began on December 5th, 2005 for a new screening room, in the Garman Opera House building. The project also includes plans for The Garman Opera House Inn, which will be located above the auditorium of the existing theatre.
The second screening room, The Garman II, will be located on stage in what is now the “fly” gallery. Access to the theater will be via Cherry Lane. As of February 2006, the remaining beams are scheduled to be delivered and set in place. After this step is completed, work will begin to construct the floor of the screening room.

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on July 2, 2007 at 10:57 am

Garman’s Opera House is listed in the 1897-98 edition of the Julius Cahn Official Theatrical Guide. A.S. Garman was Mgr. and press agent. Seating capacity was 950, and the house had both gas and electric illumination. The proscenium opening was 32 feet wide X 28 feet high, and the stage was 30 feet deep. Ticket prices were 25 cents to 75 cents and the theatre was on the ground floor. There was the Daily News plus 4 weeklies. Hotels were the Brockerhoff, Bush, and Garman. Railroads were the Pennsylvania RR and the Philadelphia & Reading RR. Bellfonte’s population was 5,000.

Patsy
Patsy on June 19, 2012 at 1:01 pm

This closed theatre was briefly featured on InSession during the Jerry Sandusky trial. One of the reporters stood in front of the theatre by the doors and mentioned its history to the town.

abandonedamerica
abandonedamerica on July 20, 2014 at 10:09 pm

I have already sent an email to this website regarding usage of these images without permission and have not received a reply. I am a big supporter of what you do but you are using my images for this site without permission or credit, which is wrong. If you wish to continue using these images I urge you to contact me at or I will have no other option but to file a DMCA take down notice with your internet service provider which may affect your entire website. I would rather not to this and resolve it amicably but you need to contact me about it immediately. Appropriating people’s work without permission or consent is not ethical or legal.

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