Because today, February 26 is Oscar night I thought I’d post about my movie memories of Martha’s Vineyard.
Movies have been a big part of Island entertainment since the early 1900′s.
The Island Theatre (Eagle Theatre) circa 1910.In 1927 the Island Theatre in Oak Bluffs was showing the talkie ‘Wings’ starring the ‘It girl’, Clara Bow. The price of admission was 50 cents on a Saturday night, 30 cents if you sat in the balcony.
At one time there were as many as 8 theatres down-Island… of those only the Island, The Strand and The Capawock remain.
Unfortunately the Island theatre has been condemned and is likely to be demolished. Sad to see a place of so many memories fading away… or as they say in the movie busines ‘fade to black.’
The Strand (2009) – Oak Bluffs has been refurbished and had a grand re-opening a couple of years ago. (CLICK HERE to read Vineyard Gazette article).
The Capawock (1996) – Vineyard Haven has also been refurbished and re-opened in May 2015. (CLICK HERE to read Vineyard Gazette article).
For me, as a summer kid on the Vineyard in the 1950′s, a night at the movies was a very big deal. The movies I remember the clearest are the musicals, like “Summer Stock” with Judy Garland, and “Showboat” with Howard Keel.
But before even getting to the theatre there was a stop at …
…Darling’s on Circuit Ave for popcorn. A bag would be fine for an afternoon treat but for going to the movies the choice was always a popcorn bar in such flavors as chocolate, strawberry,vanilla, caramel, and butterscotch.
After the ‘show’ a stop at the Frosty Cottage on Circuit Ave for a pistachio ice cream cone finished off the evening.
Many nights on the way home I morphed into a singing, dancing movie star…at least in my head
February 26, 2017 at 10:37 pm
Those old movie houses look so stately. Always sorry to see those old buildings be condemned.
February 27, 2017 at 2:51 pm
Do you know, in all my visits to the Island so far, I have yet to go inside one of the theatres. When we were there this summer I read an article on the closing, a bit heartbreaking. The other building that I guess is going to be repurposed is the Edgartown Library – UGH! That is such a lovely library building and what they plan to put up is so-unvineyardy. Seems a shame.
February 27, 2017 at 3:49 pm
I always went to the 2 theatres in Oak Bluffs and the Island was always my favorite for some reason. Wasn’t until the 1990’s that I went to the Capawock in VH. The loss of the Island theatre will leave a big hole, literally and figuratively on Circuit Ave. Really is a shame.