West Shore Theatre

317 Bridge Street,
New Cumberland, PA 17070

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West Shore Theatre

Viewing: Photo | Street View

The West Shore Theatre is a classic single screen Streamlined Moderne theatre in the heart of downtown New Cumberland. It is the West Shore because it is on the west shore of the Susquehanna River, across from Harrisburg.

The West Shore Theatre opened on January 20, 1940 with the movie “The Secret Life of Dr Kildare” and admission of 25 cents for adults, 15 cents for children. The theatre was designed by Philadelphia architect William H. Lee in an Art Moderne style. Interior wall coverings were in an old rose shade. The auditorium was furnished with walnut paneling on the side and rear walls and the ceiling had a hand painted oil painting. The theatre was built with air conditioning.

As of this writing (2008), the theatre has 450 seats, a large movie screen, EX Surround Sound, 50 varieties of candy at its concession stand and inexpensive admission prices. It was equipped with digital projection in 2014. The West Shore Theatre was put up ‘For Sale’ on 16th July 2015 due to the owner retiring, with an asking price $449,500.

Contributed by Jonathan M. Crist, Howard B. Haas

Recent comments (view all 29 comments)

Patsy on July 13, 2012 at 7:53 am

This is a remarkable looking theatre with those vintage doors!

John Simmers
John Simmers on August 24, 2012 at 1:09 pm

The Harrisburg Patriot-News recently did an extensive article about how local independent theaters are handling the switch from 35mm to digital projection. The article centered on the three-screen Midtown in Harrisburg, the non-profit Majestic in Gettysburg and another small theater upstate. No mention was made of the West Shore (or the Elks in Middletown for that matter) and I’m wondering what plans the owner of this very popular suburban theater has for the day when 35mm goes away. Many, many people would be saddened to see this little gem of a theater go away too.

Patsy on August 30, 2012 at 1:46 pm

This gem of a theatre with its original looking wood “half-moon doors” should never….go away! Any town that has a theatre as nice as this one should always “treasure” it as it is a true CINEMA TREASURE!

jblauch on October 7, 2012 at 9:13 pm

John, I know that the owner is planning to make the move to digital, but is looking for help if it can be found. We are looking into a fund raiser to help offset the enormous cost that the Movie Companies are forcing us to undertake. Also, I would just like to add that the people who sneak in thier own food are causing problems for the theatre. As we know the Movie companies take their percentage (usually around 50%) from the ticket sales. So when you look at it, we make $1.75 from each ticket. That is not enough to keep the theatre operating. So, PLEASE all who patronage the theatre, help us keep our prices low and shop at the consession stand, that is how we pay the bills. thanx.

JohnMessick on October 16, 2012 at 6:30 am

jblauch, are you male or female?

rivest266 on July 6, 2014 at 9:25 am

http://westshoretheatre.com/ is selling Japanese beauty products. old website with audio at https://web.archive.org/web/20040210000612/http://www.westshoretheatre.com/

LorinWeigard on October 3, 2014 at 2:04 pm

The West Shore Theatre is decidely a Cinema Treasure— simply because of what it is— the last of the neighborhood 2nd run theatres that used to be part of every outlying town or neighborhood away from the Harrisburg First Run theatres. I visited the West Shore last evening for the first time since their conversion to digital format, and it is THE venue to see a movie. The admission— $4 on weeknights, $5 on weekends wouldn’t get you a kid’s size soda at the local megaplex. Price aside, this is a family operation, and they make you feel welcome from the time you arrive. Then there’s the theatre— this wonderful 1940’s modern movie theatre architecture from those wonderful experior doors invites you inside to enjoy the show. The seats (not the orginal by any means) are comfortable and wide, with plenty of leg room. The screen is big with the full (or darn close to) 2.35 Cinemascope wide screen format. The new digital projection is bright and flawless. The sound is state-of-the-art 7.1 Dolby surround-in a theatre with superb acoustics. The West Shore Theatre has everything the local multiplex is missing— a history, a welcoming enviornment and a first rate movie presentation. My first memory of the West Shore was an early re-release of Disney’s Fantasia when I was 4 or 5, and I’ve been in love with this theatre from that point on. Congratulations and godspeed for another 74 years. L. Weigard

John Simmers
John Simmers on July 9, 2015 at 12:46 pm

The West Shore Theatre is for sale. Details here: http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/index.ssf/2015/07/west_shore_theatre_closes.html

Patsy on July 9, 2015 at 1:10 pm

Have sent an email to the executive director of the Carlisle Theatre in Carlisle PA in hopes they can help the West Shore.

LorinWeigard on July 10, 2015 at 7:27 am

The news posted on July 9 that the West Shore is distressing to be sure; I certainly hope someone sees what a gem this neighborhood theatre is and will carry on. This is the one theatre in this area I could count on to sit back and experience a professional presentation without having to sit through 10 trailers at painful sound levels before the picture began, or having house lights come up 8 minutes before the end of the movie. If the West Shore closes, it will be sorely missed by this movie goer.

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