Colvin Theater

1069 Kenmore Avenue,
Kenmore, NY 14217

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Colvin Theater

Aside from the unique Art Moderne design which made it distinctive, the Colvin Theater was a neighborhood film house with a few extraordinary features.

The owner/manager had an apartment on the second floor of the theater with a “window” that opened out onto the auditorium in the space that would have been a balcony. He would invite friends over to sit in the living room to watch the show. The downstairs also held a sound proofed room where mothers could sit with their young children and watch the movie through a large, glass window.

The theater has been demolished and replaced by an apartment building.

Contributed by E. Summer

Recent comments (view all 18 comments)

psmith102006 on June 10, 2006 at 6:05 am

I went to the Colvin in the 1960’s and 1970’s when I was a teenager. I lived in Kenmore, so it was easy to get to. Earthquake in Sensurrond was a big deal. I saw it 6 times there. The movie was terrible but the effect was neat. I think I saw every movie that showed there. Back in the 1970’s, some Buffalo shows where still open. I would go to the old shows instead of the multiplexes. The Bailey would show 2 movies for $1.00. What A bargain. I also went to the Kensington, I think it blew up and that was the end of it. We all went to the Showplace, the old Unity. Been in the Ellen Terry, musicians were renting in the 1990’s and it was tore down. I saw Jaws at the Lovejoy, it is now a community swimming pool. The Century was showing 3 movies on Thursdays and Saturdays in the 1970’s. Went there quite a lot. I saw Walking Tall at the Teck, it became horrible looking inside. Remember the Downtown Cinema, across the street from the Buffalo, it was really a small show compared to the big shows in downtown.

Patsy on October 25, 2006 at 4:10 pm

What a cute art deco theatre that was sadly torn down to “make way for a high-rise apartment building”. Such wisdom!

roberttoplin on May 18, 2007 at 3:26 pm

The “Colvin” was located at 1069 Kenmore Ave., between Colvin and Charleston. It was designed by Eli W. Goldstein with 1,000 seats. I have it being razed during the summer of 1984.

railroad on April 8, 2008 at 9:18 pm

Phone number 1960: DElaware 5440

greeney2 on July 13, 2010 at 9:16 am

I grew up in Kenmore in the 50’s, lived on 72 deumaunt terrace and went to Charles Lindberg. I watched many many or the sci-fi movies at the Colvin including the Blob with Steve Mcqueen. I cried at the Colvin at the end of Ol Yeller. Moved to California in 1960, and herd from a ebay customer of mine in Kenmore the Colvin was torn down. How I remember walking to and from the Colvin, many times in Winter snow. Went to matinees on Saturdays. I remember the A&P next door, and a custurd stand accross the steet, and St.Joes. I saw the film with Ben Gazarra “Buffalo something” and it looked like St. Joes filmed a scene on Wilton Place. Walking to Lindberg on winter days, and shoveling snow, the Colvin were my childhood. No snow in Los angeles, just sunny California and the movies cost a years worth of the Colvin now. That ebay customer said he retieved some kind of light fixture out of the Colvin. I have a vauge recollection of the upstairs part, and didn;t remember they had so many seats. What a shame, replaced by apartments. I’m sure I would not recognize the neighborhood, but a coworker not long ago visited Tonawanda, and took a roll of pictures of my old house and steet for me.

hammerglenn on December 15, 2013 at 6:47 pm


bbaldrober on November 11, 2014 at 3:13 pm

Anyone remember the Colvin showing 30 cartoons in the late 50’s, early 60’s on saturday afternoons? I counted once and there were less than 30, but by the end we were so bleary eyed no one cared.

tsar on May 13, 2015 at 3:11 am

Last film was Splash (1984)

I remember that title remaining on the marquee for awhile before it was knocked down.

Bafoofnik on July 29, 2015 at 1:17 pm

As so many before on this list, I went to Lindberg, Kenmore Jr., Kenmore Sr. High Schools. I was at many Saturday matinee’s. A quarter went a long ways, 14 cents to get in, 6 cents for candy and a nickel for bus fare to get home. I always looked forward to the Cheerio Yo Yo Contests. How about those grab bags for the first 500 of us kids. I’m now 73 years old (todays date July 27, 2015 for reference) and living in Las Vegas.

kenmorekid on February 23, 2016 at 7:22 am

I just posted some photos of the Colvin on this site and on my Facebook site. I got them from the Buffalo Historical Society. I am still working on obtaining other photos. Like other commentators on this site, I was a child of the 1950s who has many happy memories of this theater. I lived on Marquette Ave. and could walk to the Colvin in a matter of minutes. I remember that the ushers were a tough lot who would not hesitate to throw you out if you misbehaved. Kids would flatten their popcorn boxes and throw them spinning at the screen. If you got caught, you were out.

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