The earliest known reference to the Anona Theatre is in February 1926, when Mr. McKee presented the 12-reel picture America for Washington's birthday. Vorda McKee was a local businessman who opened a confectionary store in 1916 and applied to operate an auto stage from Holden to Greenwood in 1923.[1, 2]
A history of Holden, written in 1936, listed the Anona Theatre as one of the town's businesses, with Vorda McKee owning the theater and a Mr. Hinckley giving picture shows once a week. At the time, Holden had a population of about 550, with the principal occupations being farming and beef raising.
A movie theater with about 200 seats was operating in Holden as late as the 1960s. The theater was located just south of Wood's Market, on the northwest corner of Center Street and Main Street (about 3 North Main Street). Holden declined after Interstate 15 diverted traffic from the town, resulting in the eventual loss of its three gas stations. The advent of television probably also contributed to the eventual closing and demolition of the Anona Theatre.
1. "Holden Happenings", Millard County Chronicle, 13 July 1916, page 1
2. "Stage Permit Asked", Salt Lake Telegram, 29 January 1923, page 2
3. "Holden", Millard County Progress, 26 February 1926, page 3
4. "History of East Millard County", Millard County Progress, 03 April 1936, page 6
5. Conversation with Mike Bennett, July 2014