Photo by Lloyd Dirks on Unsplash

September 2022

Everything Old

Vintage movie theaters hold cherished memories

by Corbin Crable


We all have our own memories of going to the movies – that place where you could sit in silence, in the dark, and laugh or cry with the characters onscreen, your own troubles melting away like the ice in the cup of soda you held in your hand. Maybe you were on a date, cozied up next to your first boyfriend or girlfriend, feeling her grip your hand tightly during a scary scene, or feeling him wrap his arm around you.

You can still relive those memories, thanks to vintage movie theaters in your area that have, thankfully, been preserved thanks to the funds and care by hard-working teams of people, lovers of both movies and history.

If you live in the Overland Park area, you well remember the original Glenwood Theatre, which opened its doors to the public in

November 1966, looked opulent and grand. Everything about the Glenwood was a feast for the senses – the scent of fresh popcorn popping, the employees clad in their vest-and-bow tie combo, the feel of velvet ropes under your fingers, the chatter of excited moviegoers.

The number of these small, independent movie theaters shrinks by the year as they compete with the convenience of home viewing. They need our help to continue bringing this magic to audiences. Showing your support with your spending dollars is perhaps the greatest way you can show your support.

Donating to them directly is even better. And many of these beloved gems of our community have boosted their fundraising efforts in the past few years, renting out auditoriums for personal screenings or hosting other events, such as musical acts.

It’s no secret that here at Discover Vintage America, we often trumpet the need for shoppers to lend their
support to small businesses. Vintage movie theaters are no exception. If they are to keep their projector bulbs lit up and the popcorn popping, they need us to show up for them. They’re a place where we created lifelong memories – and we can create more memories still.

If you don’t have any plans for the weekend, see a flick at your local independent movie theater. Not only will you be able to relive those days gone by; you’ll be supporting your own community, too. And that’s a good feeling that lasts long after the film’s final credits have rolled and the auditorium lights come back up.

Author’s disclosure: Corbin is the social media manager for The Glenwood Arts Theatre in Overland Park, KS.

Contact Corbin Crable at​