Midway Theatre

830 Oakland Beach Avenue,
Warwick, RI 02889

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Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on January 30, 2011 at 2:40 pm

What was playing at the Scenic in June 1924, you ask?
These films.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on January 20, 2011 at 11:04 am

In September 1922 this theatre was part of Rhode Island’s Paramount Week. Click to see the ad in Providence News, September 1, 1922, which contains a list of all participating theatres as well as the films shown that week. This theatre was called the Scenic at that time.


Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on January 17, 2011 at 10:24 am

The making of The Peach at Oakland Beach in the summer of 1921.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on January 16, 2011 at 5:53 pm

Ah, here it is again, with a description. Click it.
The Peach at Oakland Beach

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on January 16, 2011 at 5:49 pm

The movie The Peach at Oakland Beach was shown “to crowded houses” for at least week at the Scenic Theatre in 1921.
I can’t find any other reference to this silent movie. Interesting title though.

billhart49 on July 15, 2010 at 7:56 am

Living in Oakland Beach from 1949-1962, I remember many Saturday and Sunday afternoons watching films and serials at this theatre. Then going across the street to the carousel and game arcade. I do remember that the seats were removed and it was turned into a roller skating rink (probably late fifties/early sixties). Last time I saw it a few years ago it had been turned into a church.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on June 23, 2010 at 3:35 am

Item in Boxoffice magazine, May 18, 1946:

Joe Carrolo Enlarges At Oakland Beach
OAKLAND BEACH, R.I. – Joseph L. Carrolo of the Midway here has enlarged and modernized his house. The back wall was pushed back to allow room for 100 new seats, which brings the capacity to 310, and a new “L” was built to permit a women’s lounge and men’s smoking room and larger office space. All renovations are complete except the interior painting which must be done on Wednesdays when there are no afternoon or evening shows.

Carrolo has been in the amusement business 55 years. His “regular line” is the Outdoor Amusement Enterprises, dealing in merry-go-rounds and park amusements. He loves all the phases of the amusement industry because, he explains, he is dealing with the youth of America. “I have great faith in the future of this country and much of it is based on the firsthand knowledge I have of the young people. They are great kids,” he said.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on June 30, 2006 at 1:16 am

The 1949 Film Daily Yearbook gives the seating capacity of the Midway as 350.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on July 7, 2005 at 12:17 pm

Yes, the Midway was previously called the Scenic Theatre. A photo of the building that had the Midway address, 830 Oakland Beach Road, appears in the volume Warwick’s 350 Year Heritage – A Pictorial Survey. The building, now housing J.O.N.A.H., is identified as the former Scenic. The building was donated to the Oakland Beach Congregational Church by Joseoph Carrolo (spelling?) and his daughter Alice Rounds. It is now operated by the City of Warwick as a community and senior center.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on July 1, 2005 at 1:13 am

The Warwick City Times for August 17, 1932 shows an ad for the Scenic Theatre bill of Girl Crazy and Gloria Swanson in Tonight or Never…plus kiddie shows. I have been unable to determine whether the Scenic became the Midway, only that it was an Oakland Beach theatre that existed before the Midway and, like it, was located on Oakland Beach Avenue. It may well have been a seasonal theatre, open only in the summer months.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on June 29, 2005 at 8:46 am

re: “A kind of residence.” Um, no, it is actually the Jonah Community Center. Here is a photo I just took. I would guess the two lower side portions of the building were added after its theatre days to create more room. I remember the exterior as being red in the early 1950s.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on June 28, 2005 at 11:05 am

The Midway was listed in 1948 and 1952 Warwick City directories as being owned by one Joseph L. Cariolo. A 1963 directory listed it as vacant. I no longer believe the theatre was demolished, because I drove up there today and saw that a building, resembling a former wooden-structure theatre, is still there at 830 Oakland Beach Avenue, at the start of the lane with the food stands, bars, and restaurants. It seems to be some kind of residence. References to the Scenic Theatre (with the specification “photoplays”) abound in city directories from the 1920s, disappear pretty much in the 1930s. No street number is ever given, just Oakland Beach Avenue; so I cannot determine whether the Scenic was an earlier name for the Midway Theatre. My hunch is it was.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on May 18, 2005 at 1:55 pm

No, the theatre survived…or else was damaged and rebuilt. I remember seeing it in the late 1940s or early 1950s when I went with my parents to Oakland Beach. That’s why I filed away a distinct memory of it and exactly where it was located. I seem to remember newspaper ads too for their programs during that period. Whether the place was gone or not by Hurricane Carol in 1954, I cannot say. But I saw the theatre’s exterior, and I was not yet born in 1938.

hardbop on May 18, 2005 at 1:36 pm

This theatre probably didn’t survive the ‘38 hurricane, from which I head Oakland Beach never really recovered. I remember those dough boys! Mrs. Gus was the proprietor of the stand when I went there in the 1970s. Her assistant was a guy was called “Tony the Grub.” He was a character out of one of the Farrelly Brothers movie.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on May 4, 2005 at 10:57 am

The theatre MAY have also been known as the Scenic Theatre. A city directory from 1928 lists a Scenic Theatre but not a Midway for Oakland Beach.

hardbop on April 6, 2005 at 8:23 pm

Boy, you learn something new every day. I grew up in Warwick. Our family moved there in ‘66. I never knew there had been a theatre in Oakland Beach, a neighborhood immortalized on t-shirts that read “Where the Debris, Meets the Sea.” From what I understand, Oakland Beach never recovered from the 1938 hurricane.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on March 30, 2004 at 5:36 am

The address for the Midway Theatre was 830 Oakland Beach Road.