Ritz Theater

401 South Main Street,
Big Spring, TX 79720

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Ritz TheaterĀ© Big Spring TX / Don Lewis / Billy Smith

Viewing: Photo | Street View

Opened prior to 1941, this was the showcase theater for Big Spring, back when that meant anything. It’s still open, but time has not been kind. The current owners have covered the ground floor facade with shiny gray tiles that look like they came from a bathroom. The lobby was more tastefully done, but there’s none of the original left.

There is no marquee left, indeed there is nothing at all either mounted or written on the theater except for three cheap poster boxes. The original facade is a little over three stories, and now at least is fairly plain, although there are lions mounted along the roof. All but one window has been bricked up. The rear of the theater still proclaims it ‘West Texas’ Finest Theatre', and advertizes the Vitaphone system.

Apparently some restoration work was carried out in 2008, but it was closed by early-2010.

Contributed by Seth Gaines

Recent comments (view all 19 comments)

TheaterOwner01
TheaterOwner01 on August 23, 2008 at 2:51 pm

Any info as to if its for sale, and whom to contact?

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on December 19, 2008 at 11:17 am

The Ritz Theater is listed in 1955 with 800 seats.

donsnyder10
donsnyder10 on January 3, 2009 at 8:09 am

I was a projectionist at the Ritz in the 1950’s and 1960’s when the Ritz was a grand theatre. I also ran the Lyric and State in downtown Big Spring. The Lyric closed in 1955. The State is still there but has been closed for many years. These theatres were owned by R&R theatres and they went into disrepair when the Robb’s faded away.
I am still in the business after 59 years.
Don Snyder

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on April 28, 2009 at 5:31 pm

This was the Ritz in 1984.

vitonet
vitonet on May 6, 2009 at 5:22 pm

I remember my parents taking me to see movies at this theater in the early 80s when I was a little boy and lived in the area. I remember seeing the re-release of Snow White and I think Superman 3 at this theater.

As a side note, the last time I was in Big Spring, about 1999, the theater was open and I think the marquee was still in place. I saw Carrie 2 there at a late night show. haha *If you want a more updated view of it, google street view as what looks to be a pretty recent shot of it.

rivest266
rivest266 on August 13, 2009 at 3:07 pm

Yes, it does, Thanks Vitonet. It looked much better in 1984.

phil79886
phil79886 on February 13, 2010 at 7:59 pm

My grandfather was the Robb who built the ritz, unforunitly I was never able to meet him, due to his untimely death. If you know anything about him or the theater please contact me

phil79886
phil79886 on February 14, 2010 at 5:51 am

That is what I am afraid of…… I am trying to contact Don Snyder right now. I think today I might go out to Big Spring and check out the old place. I would just really like to get into the place. I contacted the chamber of commerce to try and find out who the owner is.

DonLewis
DonLewis on April 11, 2011 at 11:17 am

From the 1980s a photo of the Ritz Theater in Big Spring.

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