Website Updates: Movie Theatres (Part 2)

More good news & bad news re: theatres below.

The Colonial Theatre in Pittsburg, KS was built in 1920. In 1959, it became the Fox Colonial Theatre and the marquee sign below was installed:

The sign was restored around 2014 and this is what the building looks like now. Majestic, yes, but I do miss the sign. It’s a trend in recent years to remove nice vintage signs from theatres to return to original looks or replace them with replicas of original signs:

The Alhambra Theatre in Hopkinsville, KY:

was updated a bit in 2018. The readerboard sign was removed and two digital displays were installed. The poster display windows and the lovely black and orange vitrolite glass panels are gone now. At least the sign is looking sharp:

The sign at the Capitol Theatre in Pittsfield, MA was either restored or replicated in 2019 — here’s what it looked like in 2011:

and what it looks like now. I think it has LED instead of neon. The readerboards on the sides are still there. I lean toward thinking this is a replica sign – note the detail panel on top with the wreath is wider:

An article about the sign’s restoration mentioned that this was the original sign from 1922 but, no. Here’s a shot (courtesy of of the lovely bulb sign from 1923 which was there. Note the incredible modular bulb letters:

The Capitol Theatre in Flint, MI:

has been restored and reopened in 2019 as a live performance venue. The blade sign was converted from neon letters to channel letters with bulbs and the readerboards are now digital displays:

The Strand Theatre in Paw Paw, MI:

is now looking better without the paneling:

One more from Michigan. The Court Theatre in Saginaw, MI:

… got a facade makeover by 2017. The vitrolite tiles shown above were removed:

The State Theatre in Ely, MN was looking pretty sad in 2011:

The sign is looking good now but, unfortunately, they went with LED tubing instead of neon:

The Ellen Theatre in Bozeman, MT:

In 2019, the neon sign and canopy were removed and replaced with a new canopy with glass which is closer to the original one from 1919. A new readerboard sign was installed over that:

The neon sign is in storage and there is hope that it might be displayed somewhere in town someday. Here’s what the theatre looked like in 1938 (from

The Fox Theatre in North Platte, NE:

The blade sign was “restored” in 2019 — with LED strips:

The Hippodrome Theatre in Loch Sheldrake, NY was demolished in 2017:

The marquee sign in Majestic Theatre in Chillicothe, OH was in 2011. My photo from 2009 below:

And what it looks like now:

Here’s a 1939 photo from

The Woodward Theatre in Cincinnati, OH has undergone a miraculous transformation. It was built in 1913 and had been closed since 1933. It was housing an antiques store when I took this photo in 2012:

It reopened after being completely restored in 2014 as a live performance venue:

The projecting bulb sign is a recreation of the original. It looks like the statues were replaced at some point:

This is turning out to be another long post. I’ll be back soon with yet more theatres. I think one more post about these should do it before I move on to other sections.

Happy trails,
dj & the dogs

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