Showing 1 - 25 of 58 comments
I believe I only went to this Drive-In one time, to see Back to the Future.
In re: the summary on the main page, it was demolished in 2013, not 2012. It was only demolished within the last 3 months.
I posted a photo of the marquee listing Run Appaloosa, Run and Snoopy Come Home as the features. The former was a 1966 film, but Snoopy Come Home was released in August 1972. So the photo is probably from August 1972. Probably within a few years of the end of this theater, judging by the prior comments.
I would love to see any more photos you have of this old place. Seeing the couple so far really makes me wish it could’ve been saved as a theater and the YMCA had found someplace else. You can email them to me at
Someone posted in another thread that the Granada was where the courthouse is now located, on the south side of Main St. at the west end of the Village. No idea if that’s true, but that’s what someone posted.
Hmmm…for a long while the picture that Joe Vogel linked to in his post on 11/10/09 was posted here. Now it’s gone and the link is also not working. I wonder if there’s a connection. Hope the picture is not gone forever because I haven’t been able to find any others of the Cinema.
Well, sure it would be better to check Newsday, but that’s not available online. New York Magazine is on google books. I’ve been running this check for a lot of local theaters and I’ve yet to find an instance of the magazine failing to list a theater that I know to have been open at the time. Though ostensibly national, New York is heavily focused on the metro area and seems to have quite exhaustive listings. They go on for pages and pages. And certainly tent. could be for other reasons, but the more important factor was that the Oakdale was listed in every issue I checked up to April 27, 1987 and none of the issues I checked after that.
And the reason I’d started checking in the first place was that the early 90s info in the overview blurb didn’t sound right to me. I got my drivers license in 1991 and set about going to just about every theater that was still open that I could find. I’m certain I would have gone to Oakdale had it been in operation, but I never did.
I would consider the New York Magazine info coupled with my memory to be fairly conclusive, but the information Joe Vogel linked to jibes perfectly and would seem to settle the question. “9 years” is pretty specific and places the closing of the Oakdale firmly in 1987.
Lastly, most of the shopping center theaters that I’m aware of (Deer Park, Mayfair, Sunwave, Kings Park) did not last into the 90s, so it would be odd if Oakdale had survived that long.
Here’s a working link to the vintage Capitol Theater Postcard
I too have wondered just how many performing arts theaters Long Island needs. Perhaps it’s true that they rely entirely on their local community rather than the Island in general (clearly nobody is going from Yaphank to see a show at the Engmann in Northport, for example) but I live smack in between the Patchogue and the Gateway Playhouse (less than 5 from minutes from both) and I’ve never been to either. CM and Boulton are both also easily accessible to me on the south shore.
Four theaters and I’ve never been to any of them. Five if you count WHB. They just never seem to have any performances that interest me. I did once try to buy tickets to see Colin Hay at the Boulton but it was already sold out.
The Suffolk will make 6 theaters within less than a 30-minute drive and will be about equally as far from me as the Boulton. Assuming they ever have a performance that interests me, the cabaret-style seating would make it the most appealing to me of any of the six theaters within range (though the sheer proximity of the Patchogue -and the ability to walk to any of 6 or 7 bars after a show- would probably still trump it for me).
But I would have much rather seen it restored as a movie theater. The Suffolk was probably in a bad location for it because Riverhead is a bit remote, but I continue to believe that in the right location a single-screen show palace type of theater could work, even out here in suburbia.
The main page blurb stating that the Oakdale Theater closed in the early 90s is inaccurate. Unless it reopened as movie theater later before becoming a performing arts venue (which I don’t think it did), I believe it closed in April or May 1987.
The April 27, 1987 issue of New York Magazine lists the Oakdale as showing The Aristocats and Burglar. Burglar is listed as being thru 4/23. Platoon is listed as “Beg. 4/24 (tent.)”
The tentative notation for Platoon is telling. More telling is that the Oakdale is not listed in the May 11, 1987 issue or any subsequent issues that I checked (no theater listings in the May 4 issue).
I don’t think so, Ed. It’s listed in the May 10, 1982 issue of New York but not in the June 1983 issue I checked (or any subsequent issues). So I’m pretty sure it closed sometime between May 1982 and June 1983.
As of today, this theater has reopened as the Paramount. It’s now strictly a concert venue.
The June 29, 1981 issue of New York Magazine lists the Encore as showing Beyond the Fog and They’re Coming to Get You through June 25, with Bruce Lee films beginning on June 26.
Just to clarify, I believe that’s the old snackbar in the foreground, the old indoor theater behind it, and the multiplex building extending to the left of both of them.
Trying to pin point just when this theater closed. I’ve been using New York Magazine listings to do that for some other local theaters. Unfortunately, sometime in 1994, the Magazine apparently stopped listing shows for Long Island. In June 1994, this was showing The Crow and Maverick. By November 1994 the magazine had stopped listing LI theaters.
Lol Bway. You made the same joke in your post on May 27, 2010.
Note to CT Admin: You can update the overview blurb from “mid-1980s” to “October 28, 1983.” That’s when it opened.
There’s an aerial short of the drive in (and many other theaters in this odd pamphlet:
Commack Multiplex, 10/28/83 – 9/25/11
Good riddance. The blood of many, more charming theaters is on your hands.
I believe I’ve pinned the final days of this theater down to May 1984. It’s listed in the May 21, 1984 issue of New York Magazine as showing The Bounty through May 17 (obviously the 5/21 issue must’ve hit newsstands prior to that). The theater is not listed in the May 28 issue or any subsequent issues that I have checked.
As the Multiplex opened in October 1983, this makes sense. The Mayfair puttered along for another 7 months and then went dark.
Yeah, I knew the indoor theater had been incorporated into the multiplex from the comments on that theater page. Wish I’d known it when the theater was open. I would’ve made a point of checking it out. As it is, the only time I was ever to the Patchogue Multiplex was to see a late night showing of Jason Goes to Hell. Either we missed the last showing at Commack or it was sold out so we burned rubber to make it to Patchogue.
Ok. This theater lasted a good deal longer than indicated in the main blurb. The March 10, 1986 issue of New York Magazine lists the RKO Plaza as showing House and Hollywood Vice Squad. The theater is not listed in the March 24 issue or any subsequent issues that I have seen.
I don’t know if there was a March 17 issue but it appears that March 1986 was the final month that the Plaza had its doors open to the public (and if those were the last two films it screened, it sure didn’t go out on top).
One other interesting thing to me is that there’s no listing in the March 1986 issues for the Patchogue multiplex. I wonder if Brookhaven alone was enough to kill the Plaza or if it was the combo of Brookhaven and the impending opening of Patchogue (since the PLaza seems to have closed before the Patchogue multiplex even opened).
Well, it makes sense that the SunWave, at least would have had no chance against the multiplex. It would have been virtually next door. However, the September 15, 1986 issue of New York has no listing for the SunWave (so maybe August 1986 was SunWave’s last month) or the Plaza but also no listing for the multiplex. Only the Patchogue is listed (as Patchogue Triplex). I think the Plaza closed a full year before the multiplex opened for business.
Anyway, the September 8, 1986 issue lists the SunWave as showing The Fly and Night of the Creeps, both “through Sept. 4.” Nothing is listed as beginning on Sept. 5. So it appears we’ve pinned the final official night of this theater down to September 4, 1986.
I also note that there are no listings in the August/Sept. 1986 issues for the drive-in, so clearly the multiplex was on the verge of opening.
The August 4, 1986 issue of New York Magazine lists the Sunwave as showing About Last Night and The Karate Kid Part II. The January 19, 1987 issue has no listing. So it looks like the latter part of 1986 was the last gasp for this place. Combined with Joe Vogel’s post from 12/8/09 indicating that a 1971 issue of Box Office described the Sunwave as “new” it seems this theater had a pretty short life of only 15 or 16 years.
Looks like by early 1985 Brentwood was getting films at the tail end of the first run. The January 28, 1985 issue of New York Magazine lists The Terminator (which hit theaters in October 1984) as playing there for a few more days with City Heat (which opened in early December) scheduled to be there as of January 25.
No problem, Leighton. Apparently a lot of back issues of New York Magazine are on google books. It’s fairly easy to just pick a year and scroll through an issue to the movie listings and just look at what theaters were listed for Suffolk County (the listing were broken down by county). Seems like a good way to pin down when a theater closed.
The January 28, 1985 issue still lists it as the RKO Plaza, showing The River and Walking the Edge, with Superstitious scheduled to replace The River on January 25 (the 1/28 issue must have hit news stands on the 24th or earlier).