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Lewiston Community Theatre
29 South Main Street
Lewiston, Utah  84320
258-1101
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Lehi City Arts Center
Lehi, Utah

After the John Hutchings Museum of Natural History moved to the Memorial Building in 1996, the former museum was renovated and reopened as the Lehi City Arts Center.   Limited by its 100-seat auditorium with a combined green and dressing room, the Lehi Arts Council announced plans in 1998 for a new performing arts complex with a 1,800 seat Broadway theater, a smaller 248-seat theater, and a theater-in-the-round.  Pledges were secured for $6 million of the necessary $15 million, but fund-raising grew difficult due to competition from other Utah County arts initiatives and the 2002 Winter Olympics Games.  In 2003, Lehi City unveiled a $150,000 renovation of the existing arts center.

 
 
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The Lewiston Community Theatre is located in the Lewiston Community Building, which also houses the Lewiston city offices.

Photographer: Grant Smith
Date: 28 June 2004

Lewiston Community Theatre
29 South Main Street
Lewiston, Utah 84320
258-1101
http://lewiston-ut.org/
 
Status:
Open 
Total Seats:
380 
Open:
2 August 1935  
On National Register of Historic Places
 
The Lewiston Community Theatre is one of only a handfull of city-owned movie theaters left in the country.  The cinema, which occupies the same building as city hall, caters to families and offers low-cost admissions and concessions.

The Lewiston Community Theatre was built as a replacement for the Lewiston Opera House, which was destroyed by fire on Christmas Eve in 1930.  After the fire, the city decided to put a new building on the site that would house not only a theater but also a library, post office, a dance and recreation hall, city offices, and a jail.

In 1934 Lewiston obtained funding for the building through the Public Works Administration, a program enacted by President Franklin D. Roosevelt during the Great Depression.

The Lewiston Community Theatre cost $56,000 and opened on Friday, 2 August 1935. The first movie was "The Gay Divorcee", starring Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers.  Admission was 10 cents for children and 50 cents for adults.

In the beginning years the Lewiston Community Theatre had no concession stand, so moviegoers would stop at a nearby drug store to buy candy and snacks to bring to the show.

Children used see free movies at the Lewiston Community Theatre as a reward for delivering the theater's calendar of upcoming events.

The Lewiston Community Theatre  used to show Spanish-language films on Sundays for Mexican immigrants who came from all over Cache Valley.  After the movie they would have dances in the adjacent recreation hall.

The stage of the Lewiston Community Theatre has been used for plays and road shows put on by local church and civic groups.  Many performers signed their names on the wall behind the movie screen.

Now days the 380-seat movie house is only open three days a week, but still draws a good size crowd.  Tickets are only $2 a seat and popcorn is only 50 cents.  Nothing at the concession stand costs more than $1.50.

The theater's best night is often Monday, when admission for the entire family is only $10.  The Lewiston Community Theatre has a policy against showing R-rated movies, but family films usually sell the best anyway.


Sources:

"Lewiston's beloved theater: 2 bucks a seat, 50 cents for popcorn", Hard News Cafe , 29 October 2003

"Picture show salute", Herald Journal , 22 November 2003