Dunellen Theater and Cinema Cafe

458 North Avenue (Route 28),
Dunellen, NJ 08812

Unfavorite 3 people favorited this theater

DUNELLEN Theatre; Dunellen, New Jersey.

Viewing: Photo | Street View

Motion pictures were first exhibited in Donellen in 1911. Throughout that decade, numerous unsuccessful attempts were made to operate a theater in the Middlesex County locale. Finally, in 1921, construction began on a $14,000, 500-seat movie theater.

Hosford’s Theater opened on North Avenue in May 1922, featuring both vaudeville acts and motion pictures. After several run-ins with local law enforcement due to management’s occasional attempts to violate “Blue Laws” by exhibiting films on Sundays, the theater was sold to the owner of the Brook Theater in nearby Bound Brook. By 1932, after a brief time as “Dunellen’s Cameo Theater”, the facility had become know as the Dunellen Theater.

Having continued to exhibit movies for most of its 80+ years, the theater is currently know as the Dunellen Theater and Cinema Cafe and features live acts in addition to first-run, commercial motion pictures. The current owner, who is also the proprietor of neighboring Zupko’s Tavern, removed alternating rows of seating (reducing the seat count to about 350) in order to accommodate tables and now operates what may be the only exhibition venue in NJ which allows patrons to enjoy full meals in their seats while watching a show. The single-screen theater books children’s birthday parties in the balcony and offers numerous admission and “package” discounts.

Contributed by Damien Farley

Recent comments (view all 8 comments)

teecee
teecee on May 19, 2005 at 10:28 am

This article provides details on the current owners and how they saved the theater.

verranth1
verranth1 on May 31, 2006 at 8:03 pm

I went to my first movie here as a toddler:

Funny Girl

also went to

Lords of the Flatbush
Rocky
Posideon Aventure

Was never as popular as Blue Star in Watchung….

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on November 10, 2006 at 12:31 pm

This is a photo of the Dunellen Theater.

Zoltan
Zoltan on February 1, 2007 at 1:50 pm

This was/is a really cute theatre. Went here a lot in the 70’s and early 80’s. Great memories.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on June 16, 2007 at 10:11 pm

Here is a recent view of the Dunellen Theater.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on June 30, 2007 at 3:17 pm

This is an interior view.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on April 23, 2009 at 5:35 pm

Here are some 1988 photos:

Photo1

Photo2

Photo3

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