Strand Theatre

316 Broadway Street,
Seaside, OR 97138

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Strand Theatre

The Strand Theatre opened in 1916 and operated through at least 1957.

Contributed by Ken Roe

Recent comments (view all 3 comments)

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on April 27, 2011 at 5:56 am

The April 12, 1916, issue of The Moving Picture World said this: “Seaside.â€"B. J. Callahan has opened the Strand theater here.”

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on August 17, 2017 at 6:42 pm

PSTOS has a photo of the Strand, where a Robert Morton organ was installed in 1925.

B.J. Callahan’s Strand Theatre was mentioned in the trade journals quite a few times in the late 1910s an early 1920s. In 1915, Callahan was mentioned in a few publications as operator of a house in Seaside called the Critic Theatre. The Critic had been in operation at least as early as 1912, as it was mentioned in Joseph Gaston’s The Centennial History of Oregon, 1811-1912, published that year.

The April 24, 1915, issue of Motography said that B.J. Callahan had begun construction on a new theater at Seaside. The project must have suffered delays, as the announcement of the Strand’s recent opening appeared in the April 12, 1916, issue of The Moving Picture World.

An interesting wire service article about Callahan and his theater appeared in the April 7, 1922, issue of the Santa Cruz Evening News from Santa Cruz, California:


“SEASIDE, Ore., April 6.

“A motion picture theatre without a box office is more than an innovation here; it is a big success, after a trial of three months. B. J. Callahan, the movie house owner, remodeled his front, tore out the ticket seller’s cage and installed a glass box between the entrance and the exit, so that patrons could drop into it whatever money they thought the picture was worth on their way out.

“Callahan had strong faith in human nature, and his three-month experience proved it was justified and convinced him that if old Diogenes should visit the local movie house he’d walk on down to the ocean beach after the show and heave his lantern into the sea.

“‘My plan has been a success from the very first day,’ said Callahan. ‘I thought the novelty might wear off, but it doesn’t. Why did I start? Because I had a decided slump in business last fall. I was losing money by keeping open after the summer tourist season slowed down. I hated to close for the winter. I liked the people and had confidence in them. They needed entertainment. I was satisfied if I could just break even.

“‘But let me tell the world something. I am making more money than I did with a regular admission charge. The people pay for what they get. When we show a poor picture the receipts fall down. When a good picture is shown the receipts double.”

A 1949 directory lists B. J. Callahan as owner of both the Times Theatre and the Strand Theatre.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on August 17, 2017 at 6:50 pm

The lot at 316 Broadway is part of the footprint of a modern, block-square building called Seaside Carousel Mall. The mall has been there for over a quarter of a century, so the Strand building was probably demolished sometime before 1990.

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