Union County Arts Center

1601 Irving Street,
Rahway, NJ 7065

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Union County Arts Center

Viewing: Photo | Street View

The Rahway Theatre opened on October 16, 1928 with a seating capacity of 1,449. This former movie and vaudeville house in Rahway, New Jersey has been reborn as a performing arts and concert venue that still shows classic films from time to time.

Recent comments (view all 21 comments)

teecee on May 7, 2008 at 4:26 pm

Theater reopened in February and now features air conditioning for year round programming.

“The theater’s history goes back to 1927, when a wealthy Rahway businessman named Barney Engel man bought a parcel of land off Irving Street and built the old Rah way Theater for vaudeville acts and to showcase the fledgling movie in dustry.

The theater held its opening night on Oct. 16, 1928, with silent films and live organ music.“ extracted from View link

mdvoskin on September 8, 2009 at 2:11 pm

Does anyone know whether any of the upcoming film events will be presented from 35mm film, or are they just DVD presentations?

gabedellafave on September 10, 2009 at 5:27 pm

Seems like The Rahway used to have a far more active film schedule just a couple of years ago — and it was 35mm film. They also had the Wurlitzer which was a wonderful addition to the program. I miss this theatre’s film series. This theatre is a real gem. It is perhaps the perfect neighborhood house from the late 1920s. It didn’t need a whole lot of work, and they let most of the old things remain. It feels real and not overly restored. Please bring back the 35mm film series!

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on August 7, 2010 at 12:37 am

According to the official web site, the architect’s surname is spelled Oltarsch. Please correct the attribution at the top of this page.

HarryGribbon on September 23, 2010 at 7:32 pm

On October 16 and 17 2010 (Satruday-Sunday) there will be tours of the theater as part of Union County’s 4 Centuries weekend. See the website www.ucpac.org for further details. Get to see behind the scenes, and to experience the history of this beautifully restored classic Vaudeville/Silent Film landmark.

GDellaFa on September 27, 2010 at 6:01 pm

No more movies?…

HarryGribbon on September 27, 2010 at 6:15 pm

Movies will be a part of the upcoming year’s schedules. Program for next film selection will be posted shortly. Watch the website WWW.UCPAC.com or watch this space. Future films from Classics to Independants will be posted in the schedule. Feel free to email suggestions to and they will be reviewed and forwarded. The Art Center always desires to hear patrons requests.
Or come visit and speak to us yourself during 4 Centuries weekend, Oct 16 and 17, 2010.

mdvoskin on September 27, 2010 at 6:40 pm

I hope it’s movies projected from 35mm film? The consumer quality video that the UCAC was showing since the renovation looks terrible.

HarryGribbon on December 17, 2010 at 7:07 am

The Union County will be having a film show January 6th 2011, the first Thursday of the month, at 7:00 PM. Classic films and cartoons of the thirties will be shown from film on our big screen. See http://ucpac.org/images/Image/FilmShortsFlyer.pdf for title information. ADMISSION IS FREE. Come in early and enjoy a walk around our fully restored 1928 vaudeville theater. Cameras welcome before show starts.

markp on September 5, 2013 at 4:52 pm

Worked here a few times in its final days as a porn house and again in 1999 as a projectionist.

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