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Down In Front – 20th Century Theatre

Down In Front – 20th Century Theatre

A quick announcement: Down In Front will now be a monthly column instead of a weekly column. All of you ladies who told me that I would be just as busy with my children as teens as I was 10 years ago may now pat yourselves on the back for being absolutely 100% correct!

Built in the Neoclassical Modern or Art Modern style which was popular at the time, the 20th Century Theatre began its long life during the heat of August 1941. The 20th Century Theatre was the first air conditioned theater in Cincinnati, Ohio, one of the first fire proof buildings, and one of the first to offer free valet parking. The guests marveled at the architecture of Fred W. Stritzel when they arrived to watch stars Tyrone Power and Rita Hayworth in Blood And Sand.

Business began to decline for the 20th just as it did for most community theaters (and drive-ins!) thanks to the giant multi-plexes popping up all over. The theatre was forced to close its doors in 1983 and the building sat vacant only to rot for the next 9 long years. By 1990, a local businessman, Mike Belmont, bought the theatre and made it into Belmont’s Floor Company. This lasted a year and then the Cincinnati Church of Christ set up operations there for the next 4 years.

Late in 1997, 20th Century Productions came alive, ready to bring special attention to Concert Events (there have been many great bands that have played there already!), and private functions, such as weddings and parties. It is simple to book your event or concert and all the information to do so can be found right here on their webpage.

History was made again when, on December 1, 2010, the 20th Century tower lit up Oakley Square for the first time in thirty years!

For more articles about drive in theaters, click here! If you would like to highlight an interesting movie theater in YOUR town, please feel free to follow me onTwitter, or be my awesome pal on Facebook!


Stephanie Stebbins Stephanie Stebbins is a native of Virginia Beach, VA but is currently living in the land of poofy bangs and bitchin’ Camaros that is Fort Worth, Texas. She is married to a United States Navy service member and has two children she affectionately refers to as Thing One and Thing Two. Currently she is a blogger: http://stephinfectionisinyourhead.blogspot.com but plans on world domination as all bloggers secretly do. She thoroughly enjoys tomatoes, but is not a fan of liver.


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