Central Park Theatre

3531 W. Roosevelt Road,
Chicago, IL 60624

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DavidZornig on September 12, 2023 at 11:40 am

Central Park Theatre is part of Open House Chicago, Saturday October 14 10am-5pm. No cameras per the link below.


0123456789 on March 8, 2022 at 6:01 pm

The theatre is going to be restored. https://www.chicagobusiness.com/arts-entertainment/chicago-movie-house-central-park-theater-restoration-gets-new-push

LouRugani on February 11, 2022 at 6:44 pm

Harry Silverstein, about 25, was shot and killed at the rear of the Central Park Theatre on January 4, 1931. An ex-employee named Rappaport, 20, was on the back of the stage that night with electrician Herbert Imlach, Irving Riffkind and Robert Ross. About 8:30 P. M. a Bob Lewis approached Rappaport to say that Silverstein was outside and that Rappaport went to the stage door and that two shots were heard. Witnesses rushed down to see Silverstein grappling with Rappaport, who ran away to be apprehended at Mansfield, Ohio in February, 1935. He claimed self-defense, great fear of Silverstein, and a history of attacks by Silverstein from high school on combined with death threats without justification. Silverstein was 5'10" tall and weighed 180 pounds, while Rappaport was 5'5" and weighed but 115 pounds.

On the night of the homicide, Rappaport testified that he and some others played cards in the theatre for awhile and he later played solitaire. When made aware that Silverstein was present, he ran to the stage door, opened it and stepped into the alley where he was felled with a powerful blow and that they grappled; that the gun was in the pocket of his coat; that Troubles tore the pocket and the gun fell on the ground; that they both reached for it and in the struggle the gun was discharged; that he believed he was in danger of great bodily harm from Silverstein; that he did not see Ross, Riffkind or Imlach there at that time; that he left the gun on the ramp where it dropped after the shooting; that he immediately ran away, went to New York, assumed the name of Milton Stein, and traveled with a New York salesman through five or six states until he was arrested at Mansfield, Ohio. Riffkind testified that the noise of shots was a part of the picture then playing in the theatre.

DavidZornig on January 18, 2021 at 9:45 pm

Central Park Theatre marquee in 1966 at 0:55 in the video.


DavidZornig on December 8, 2020 at 7:48 pm

Three links, a Go Fund Me page, restoration committee website and official Facebook page.




DavidZornig on November 10, 2020 at 11:24 am

Current Block Club Chicago article lists that address as 3531 W. Roosevelt.


DavidZornig on October 15, 2020 at 10:51 am

A 2013 video found by Tim O'Neill.


Tim O'Neill
Tim O'Neill on December 26, 2017 at 12:02 am


Broan on October 19, 2017 at 10:41 am

Contrary to the popular narrative, the Central Park did not open with air conditioning and was not the first in Chicago with air conditioning. Its sister, the Riviera, announced its “freezing plant” June 12, 1919. The Central Park’s was announced June 21, 1919. Ad is posted in Photos section.

DavidZornig on October 4, 2015 at 3:23 pm


Broan on October 4, 2015 at 3:21 pm

It’s a hassle to write in the link HTML for everything when it can be copy-pasted just the same.

DavidZornig on October 4, 2015 at 3:16 pm

Thank you. Can you do the same with the Randolph?

Broan on October 4, 2015 at 3:13 pm

Try clicking this again. I have no idea why this isn’t working for you, but it’s an April 1918 issue, page 734

DavidZornig on October 4, 2015 at 3:07 pm

OK, I got it to open up on Bing, not Google. It brings up a magazine from 1931. Is there a certain page that references the central Park?

Broan on October 4, 2015 at 3:00 pm

Just copy and pasted it in three different browsers and it worked fine.

DavidZornig on October 4, 2015 at 2:54 pm

Above link doesn’t work either.

throne3333 on September 26, 2015 at 5:08 pm

Thank you DavidZornig for honoring my legendary uncle Dr. Lincoln Scott in your blog. He will moat definitely be missed. However, his passion to restore the amazing Central Park Theater lives. A not for profit Alternative Village is prepared to take to helm on Dr. Scotts behalf.The Central Park Theater has such an historical value to the North Lawndale community, we feel that yhe message muat be continued to be uttered throigh this restorative process.

DavidZornig on September 2, 2015 at 11:44 pm

Reverend Lincoln Scott who saved the building has died. Copy & paste to view.


Broan on February 1, 2015 at 10:12 am

Probably was remodeled early on to provide a larger stage and screen.

baraboowolter on January 31, 2015 at 11:03 pm

Upon comparing the historic interior photo with photos and videos of the church that is currently in the building, I have noticed that they don’t match. Clearly the historic photo has a “CP” on the valance of the proscenium opening so I take it that is for Central Park. Photos of the proscenium in the church don’t match nor does the ceiling. Can anyone help?

Broan on April 11, 2013 at 3:56 pm

On the West Side, maybe. There are some nice ones on the South Side.

GFeret on April 11, 2013 at 3:46 pm

i’ve just noticed a major exterior brick tuckpointing job underway here. of all the large old inner city former theatre buildings i believe the central park continues to be in the best shape

RickB on January 17, 2013 at 9:28 pm

Shots of five endangered Chicago palaces—including this one—and a Roger Ebert essay. Chicago Magazine

rivest266 on June 25, 2012 at 4:03 pm

October 10th, 1917 grand opening ad uploaded here.