Arnett Benson Theatre

105 University Avenue,
Lubbock, TX 79401

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Arnett-Benson ... Lubbock Texas

The Arnett Benson Theatre opened August 5, 1950 by Mr. & Mrs. Preston Smith. It was later operated by Lubbock Theatres, Inc. This single screen theatre closed in 1975. It was located on Univesity Avenue at 1st Street.

Contributed by Chuck Van Bibber/Don Lewis

Recent comments (view all 9 comments)

dwightyoung on January 11, 2006 at 5:01 am

This theatre wasn’t much to look at, being pretty plain both outside and in. Even though it was located some distance from downtown and in a nondescript part of Lubbock, it showed first-run movies for a while in the 1950s and ‘60s — I think I remember seeing “Psycho” there. Not sure whether it’s still standing.

Whodoe on March 11, 2006 at 7:37 pm

The AB was open a little later (I think) than 1975. My friend was manager there and we saw Logan’s Run and the inevitable Rocky Horror there until around 1978.

But what ever happened to the Winchester? I think that was where he took the money at night. It was the best in town back then!

Whodoe on March 11, 2006 at 8:03 pm

Oh … I see what happened to Winchester. That place was incredible!

irpworks on October 1, 2006 at 2:03 pm

The theater is still standing with retail in front. Several furniture rental businesses, pawn shops and the like have occcupied it. Auditorium is used as a warehouse. Neighborhood is still known by the same name.

irpworks on August 29, 2007 at 12:20 am

Many Lubbock theaters shown. El Capitan; Plaza; Clifton; Lindsey; Cactus; Westerner Drive-In; Corral; Broadway; Midway; Plains Drive-In; Arnett-Benson; Arcadia.

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From the drop-down box choose: Buildings-Commercial-Movie Theaters

Search theatre and drive-in and there are other arial shots of other drive-ins, etc.

irpworks on August 29, 2007 at 8:03 pm

another good pic is in this collection:

View link

search “Arnette”

rivest266 on November 7, 2009 at 3:11 pm

This opened on August 5th, 1950. Will post the grand opening announcement at

Robert Verkler
Robert Verkler on March 30, 2012 at 11:35 am

I was the projectionist here in 1971-1972. My older brother was the projectionist during the night of the tornado. I always liked the Arnett Benson. I also worked the State and the Village as a projectionist and the Winchester as a usher and doorman in 1970. Fond memories of there theaters, it’s a shame none are left.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on July 3, 2018 at 1:24 pm

The August 5, 1950 Lubbock Morning Avalanche said that the Arnett-Benson Theatre would have its formal opening that night. The owners of the new neighborhood house were Mr. and Mrs. Preston Smith, who had entered the theater business when they opened the Tech Theatre in Lubbock on June 2, 1936. By 1950 the Smith Theaters chain included the State Theatre, the Plains Theatre, and the 5-Point Drive-In.

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