Posts Tagged ‘Fenelon Theatre’

Help Restore The Fenelon Theatre Marquee (July 2017)

June 27, 2017

FenelonMarquee_sign2The Fenelon Theatre building may be gone but the iconic marquee sign will be back! A group of dedicated community members, together with Maryboro Lodge – The Fenelon Museum, have formed a committee (Fenelon Theatre Marquee Group) and have been diligently working to gather information on the restoration and future placement. While this process will take time, it will also require money. Some funding has been secured through the Legacy Chest Fund, however more funds will be required. Through your donations we can make this happen! Donations are being accepted at Maryboro Lodge – The Fenelon Museum and Stokes on Trent. A Facebook page has also been created to allow everyone to follow along on this journey.

MIDNIGHT MADNESS POP-UP SHOP!  Join us July 8th

T-shirts and other goodies emblazoned with the image of the Fenelon Marquee are available for sale and there will be pop-up shops throughout the summer. A pop-up will be held in the old Video Image store, beside Stokes on Trent, the night of Midnight Madness – July 8th.

For more details be sure to check out Pam Vanmeer’s Kawartha 411 coverage at http://www.kawartha411.ca/2017/06/23/saving-the-fenelon-theatre-marquee/

and be sure to follow the Fenelon Theatre Marquee Group on facebook for all the lastest news at https://www.facebook.com/lightupthesign/

 

Farewell to The Fenelon Falls Movie Theatre (Nov. 2016)

November 29, 2016

By : Lois Densmore

theatre3The landscape of Fenelon Falls took quite a turn this week as the town said goodbye to the old movie theatre.

Originally built in 1948 by the Consky brothers, Lou, Max and Sam, the theatre presented a lineup of Disney movies and Main Street shows to Fenelon Falls residents and summer cottagers.

When it first opened, Saturday afternoons were a busy time with kids lined up to see the latest show. Admission was a quarter and popcorn was five cents. The building has changed hands a number of times and has not been open since the early 2000s.

The cinder-blocks used to build the theatre were hand made. Cement was poured into metal frames by Mark Fel and Milt Perryman. I heard from one of our locals that Milt is still alive at age 91 and living in Windsor.

theatre2The theatre was valued at $750k, on sale for $450k, and in 1995 sold for $50,000 to Jim McManamy and his brother Joseph.

The brothers had a theatrical background, Jim having more than 30 years of experience in theatre and film. He was also the head electrician at the Shaw Festival. They stored a lot of their equipment in what is now the Blue Oak Antique Shop – the building started life as the blacksmith shop doing work for local businesses in the farm community.

theatre4

 

Over the years the McManamy boys made many improvements to the theatre including a fire alarm system, plus all new plumbing and all new electrical. They also installed sounds-a-round in the auditorium plus new theatre seats and new floors. Changes were also made to the apartment – inner walls to outside walls were torn out, creating one 1400 sq. ft. flat, consisting of kitchen, dining room, living room, 2 bedrooms, and 2 four piece bathrooms with a Jacuzzi tub in the master.

A complete list of improvements can been seen at the following URL.

http://www.brushcut.com/ad_details/16781-Fenelon_Falls_Theatre_for_sale_Upgraded_Digital_Theatre_for_sale

In 2006 they hosted Bill Haley in the theartre6“Man in Black” tour, a tribute to Johnny Cash. The venue also played host to many other events including a few country bands, company off-sites and a few weddings with PowerPoint running on the bride and groom’s lives.

The McManamys believed it possible to keep culture alive in tourist towns and went to great lengths to raise money to maintain the theatre, and in July of that year offered a special fish and chip lunch with tickets purchased for the 2 PM show.

Comments on Facebook provides some history :

Jason used to come here as a kid with this cousins and sister back in the 70’s and watch all the latest ‘flicks’.

threatresignLarry remembers his uncle going to the weekend all night horror movies.

I had the opportunity to chat with residents who were here when the theatre was alive and kicking,

Jack fondly remembers the specials presented on the day after Santa Day. Brenda was an avid theatre goer from 1960 until the theatre closed.
Long time resident Marg was the librarian here in Fenelon for 17 years. She rarely missed a movie as they changed over weekly, but her ‘BiG DEAL’ was seeing ‘Gone with the Wind’. Other movies were shown via reel so you could always stay for a second showing if you wished…..Not ‘Gone with the Wind’, it was that special.

As with many of the joys of our childhoods, we said farewell to the theatre this week. It’s history however deserves to live on.


Note: for more about the future of the Fenelon Sign click here.