Plaza Theatre

107 West 11th Street,
Lamar, MO 64759

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Plaza Theatre

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Located on the south side of historic Lamar Square. The Plaza Theatre opened on October 25, 1934 with great fan fare. Every major studio at that time sent representitives for opening night. Telegrams were sent from Clark Gable, Joan Crawford, Mae West, Al Jolson and many others. The Plaza Theatre was designed by architect Larry P. Larsen of Webb City and originally seated 600. It was remodeled in 1945 to the designs of architect Robert O. Boller and had a seating capacity of 587.

Closed in 1986 when a fire at a clothing store next door forced the theatre to shut down. With no funds available and condemation inevitable, a group of local citizens and business owners stepped forward to head a committee to save this historic theatre. After 10 years+ of negotiating and fund raising, the Plaza Theatre reopened on November 5, 1998. Still a single screen, with original hand painted murals on canvas tapestries hanging on side walls. Various designs and decor throughout the building.

Contributed by scott kelley, Joe Davis

Recent comments (view all 5 comments)

JimRankin
JimRankin on April 29, 2004 at 6:41 am

Tour of Missouri, Oklahoma and Kansas Theatres in 2004
From June 26 through July 1, 2004 the Theatre Historical Society of America will tour a number of theatres in Kansas City Missouri and surrounding areas, including theatres in Lamar, Joplin, Richmond, St. Joseph and Springfield, MO, as well as Miami, OK, and these cities in Kansas: Leavenworth, Kansas City, Emporia, El Dorado, Augusta, Wichita, Hutchinson, McPherson, Salina, Concordia, and Topeka. More information is contained on their web site: http://www.HistoricTheatres.org and special photos and information concerning the Kansas City theatres: UPTOWN and the MIDLAND is available on this temporary page of their site at: http://www2.hawaii.edu/~angell/thsa/fromarch.html A glossy brochure about this “Heart of America” Conclave is available from the Society’s headquarters listed on their homepage, via E-mail to the Ex. Director, or via snail mail. Membership in the Society is not required to attend the Conclave and tour the theatres, but fees do apply as detailed on their site. Bring your camera and lots of film, for it is usually difficult or impossible to enter these theatres for photos, and some of them will surely not be with us in the years to come.

jmurray
jmurray on April 4, 2008 at 1:53 am

This is one of the nicest theatres out there. It took them 5 years to completely renovate it and they did a magnificent job with it. I don’t go to the movies often anymore but I tend to go to the Plaza the most, mainly because it’s a small town theatre and they’ve done a good job of keeping up the historical look to it while making it more modern as well.

Throughout the theatre are reminders of the threate in it’s early days. There are pictures of the front of the theatre from 50-60 years ago.

This threate has great management running it and should be there for many years to come.

LamarMovies
LamarMovies on August 22, 2009 at 8:10 am

Hello,

I am in the process of redoing the LamarMovies.com website. I am adding pictures (old and new) as well as history of both the Plaza Theater and Barco Drive-In so stay tuned.

This is what I am working on now, although I am not making it “public” until I am done. But you can have a sneak peek.

www.lamarmo.com/movies

Thank you

LamarMovies
LamarMovies on August 22, 2009 at 3:11 pm

Thanks Chuck. It is close to complete. I am not going to clutter it up with a whole bunch of junk but I do want to get my facts straight and POST as many old photos as I can. I love those things.
Take care,

Joe

Chris1982
Chris1982 on September 1, 2014 at 2:13 am

Loe (Lamar Movies) has the Plaza and Barco made the transition to digital projection?

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