Do you remember your first movie or for that matter the theater you saw it in? Chances are you do not, then again that could just be me!
Of the hundreds of trips I took to local movie houses it’s strange how few stand out – for one reason or another – in my memory… Star Wars, Raiders of the Lost Ark, The Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi, Dune, Midway, Sword and Sorcerers, Star Trek the Motion Picture, Rocky, Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, Jaws, Quest for Fire, Bedknobs and Broomsticks, Big Top Pee Wee.
And along with those memories are even more fleeting visions of the theaters themselves; Fox, Hellman, Towne, Mohawk Mall, Cine 10, Mohawk Drive-In, Carman Drive-In, Turnpike Drive-In and the Indian Ladder Drive-In. And what about the friends and family I went with? My parents, the MYF gang, birthday parties and more.
Doubtless there will be many more films, many more theaters and memories uncovered as this project moves forward. I will start with the theaters closest to where I grew up (that no-mans land between Voorheesville and New Salem) and branching out from those to Guilderland, Colonie, Albany, Schenectady and wherever else it leads.
And since I know I’ll never remember all of these theaters I’ll be asking for help from you. Anyone that has ever attended one of the movie houses that may or may not exist now, I want to hear your stories, I want to see your photos and videos. I want to see some of the great memorabilia that you’ve collected as well (I’ve heard rumors of glass ash trays from the Indian Ladder Drive-In).
I’ll thank you in advance for having a better memory than mine and for saving more collectibles than I did. And I thank you for participating in this journey to our past, for loving movies and remembering the theaters they were shown in.
Okay, dim the lights, part the curtains and roll the trailers. Here we go…