Panorama Theatre

1621 Penfield Road,
Rochester, NY 14625

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Jo-Mor Theatres

Architects: Joseph Schuler Jr, George Edward Yurchison

Functions: Retail

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News About This Theater

Panorama Theatre

Opened September 14, 1966 as a stand alone building for Jo-Mor Enterprises Inc. The opening movie was Charlton Heston in “The Battle for Khartoum” presented in 70mm. It included 750 rocking chair seats and a very large screen. Very nice theatre that went the way of so many suburban theatres and was twinned in the 1970’s. Closed on October 4, 1992 following a a bitter dispute with the owner and the operator.

Contributed by dhroc

Recent comments (view all 15 comments)

Coate on June 3, 2012 at 10:40 pm

Ever since the website was redesigned, I’ve noticed numerous instances where someone deleted a comment of theirs in an attempt to hide the fact that they posted erroneous information. Anyone reading the comments sequentially after a deletion might be confused, so, in my opinion, all comments should stay. Of course, I also think whenever an intro is edited there should be a time & date stamp so that readers know a revision was based on someone’s comment, especially since the commenter won’t get credit and the original intro writer who failed to mention something or got a detail wrong ends up with the credit. An unfair and poorly thought out policy, if you ask me.

Anyway, Jensen, how did you come up with an address of 1601 Penfield Road when the ad states the theater was located at 360 Penfield Road?

Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois
Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois on June 4, 2012 at 5:33 am

Michael, I know your a stickler for perfection, but I think CT could use some cleaning up. I wish everyone would go through their posts and delete ones for at least photos and websites that don’t work. Please look up the Willard Theatre in Norfolk, Virginia. Don’t you think I could remove some of those comments that have nothing to do with the theatre? As I wrote above the same ad that gives the address of 360 Penfield, also gives the location as PANORAMA PLAZA. That PLAZA is located at 1601 Penfield.

Coate on June 4, 2012 at 7:30 am

Jensen… The theater wasn’t in the plaza, which may explain why it had a different address.

Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois
Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois on June 4, 2012 at 9:39 am

Opened September 14, 1966 with two Philips Cinema of Holland DP70 Projectors. “DP” short for “Double Projector”, “70” designed specifically as a 70mm projector. These projectors could play all 70mm and 35mm formats except VistaVision. Later on the projectors would be called Todd-AO Projectors, Universal 70/35, and a newer version Norelco AAII.

Panorama projectors came from the Town Theatre in Rochester, New York. When no longer used at the Panorama one went to The Stoneridge Theatre in Rochester, and the other went to The Strand Theatre in Brockport, New York.

Michael, did I get that all correct?

Jim Barg
Jim Barg on June 4, 2012 at 2:48 pm

The theater was always referred to as Panorama Plaza, right up until it closed. I can’t comment on the actual location compared to the strip mall (which is still in use) because I live on the other side of Rochester and am unfamiliar with the Penfield area.

Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois
Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois on June 23, 2012 at 4:05 pm



PENFIELD, new york





The building is located in PENFIELD, but has a Rochester mailing address.

A Panera Bread and Dollar Tree Store are now located in the building.

Thanks to Kathy Kanauer, Penfield Historian/Local History Room Coordinator for all the above information.

dhroc on December 20, 2012 at 3:47 pm

The Panorama opened on 8/17/66 with Khartoum in 70mm or what was then referred to as single lense Cinerama. Green velvet-like drapery with green rocking chair seats. I don’t know the cap. Theatre was a stand alone in the Panorama Plaza. It was twinned in the 70’s.

dhroc on January 30, 2013 at 3:34 pm

P.s. to last post. It was originally goint to be called the Cinerama Theatre but ended up the Panorama with “Cinerama” logo underneath its sig.

rivest266 on January 24, 2016 at 9:30 am

September 14th, 1966 grand opening ad in photo section.

dallasmovietheaters on January 10, 2018 at 3:57 am

The dramatic ending of the Panorama Theatre took place in October of 1992. The property owner announced the end of the theatre while the manager disagreed with the fate of the theatre and questions about rent. The two-screen theatre completed showings of “3 Ninjas,” “Single White Female”, and “A Stranger Among U"s on one screen and "A League of Their Own,” “The Player,” and “Whispers in the Dark” on the other. From October 6, 1992 and weeks forward, the theatre operator barricaded himself in the building while the owner of the plaza cut off water and electricity ending the theater’s operation Although showtimes are listed through October 6, the likely final showings were October 4, 1992.

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