Comments from jlaymon

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jlaymon commented about Strand Theatre on Feb 18, 2024 at 11:28 am

Photo by Al Senior, Senior Studios, 1938

jlaymon commented about Strand Theatre on Feb 18, 2024 at 11:26 am

Photo by Jim Laymon ©

jlaymon commented about Strand - Ocean City, NJ on Nov 1, 2022 at 8:21 pm

Wow. Never saw this before. This is when it was being built in 1938. I’ve climbed inside that marque back in the 1980s.

jlaymon commented about Moorlyn Square Theatre on Oct 27, 2020 at 7:26 am

Trying to update my original description… The Moorlyn was built in 1905 by William G Moore as a bowling alley (Moore’s Bowling Casino). The second floor, overlooking the boardwalk, housed the “Casino Club” which offered dancing, music, and billiards. In 1922 the bowling alley was converted to a theater with about 1,600 seats and was renamed: The Moorlyn Theatre. It opened on June 19, 1922 The adjacent street, Moorlyn Terrace, was created in 1901.

In July 1929 the building was moved 355 feet toward the ocean to connect to the new boardwalk of 1928. New sound equipment was installed for the first time.

It was purchased in 1931 by William F. Shriver and was operated by Shriver and later his daughter, Helen, until 1989 when it was sold to the Frank Theater chain.

By 1931, Shriver owned or operated all the boardwalk theaters in Ocean City, including the Strand, Village, and Showboat.

Although the front half of the building was replaced in 2002, the auditorium area is still from the original bowling alley, making it the second oldest surviving building on the Boardwalk (after the Champion Building next door, that housed Simms' Restaurant).

jlaymon commented about Hippodrome Theatre on Mar 23, 2019 at 12:36 pm

Not to be confused with the first Hippodrome Theatre and Stock Co., which was on the land side of the boardwalk. It became the Strand Theatre sometime after 1910, and burned down in 1937.

jlaymon commented about 1941 photo via Paul Walton. on Feb 28, 2019 at 3:29 pm

Photo by Al Senior of Senior Studios, Ocean City

jlaymon commented about Strand Theatre on Jul 1, 2016 at 1:22 pm

Ribturtle, I must have just missed you. I was a projectionist at the Moorlyn in ‘77 and then at the Strand from '78 to '88. Our biggest summer must have been “ET” in 1982. We actually used the balcony a few times.

jlaymon commented about Surf Theatre on Sep 18, 2015 at 5:47 am

Joe Vogel – What a great find. I never knew who the architect was and I had heard stories that the building was constructed in record time, but I never had a confirmation of that. Thank you!
Jim Laymon

jlaymon commented about Moorlyn Square Theatre on Apr 11, 2013 at 1:21 pm

Joe Vogel – I’m just now seeing your link to BOXOFFICE and the pictures of the Moorlyn. That is So Cool! I remember that entrance. The stainless steel had been painted white (as you see in my picture at the top of this page)and I kind of thought that it was probably Stainless originally. Very cool photos. Believe it or not, I have the one of the original neon “O"s from the MOORLYN sign in that art deco style. Thanks for the link.

jlaymon commented about Moorlyn Square Theatre on Apr 11, 2013 at 1:17 pm

It is now owned by the Ocean City Tabernacle. A newspaper article from a couple months ago stated that the Tabernacle would use a few screens for family movies.

jlaymon commented about Strand Theatre on Apr 11, 2013 at 1:15 pm

The last I heard the Frank Company had sold it (and the Moorlyn) to an investment group who then sold the Moorlyn to the Ocean City Tabernacle. I don’t know the plan for the STRAND but I would like to find out.

jlaymon commented about Village Theatre on Oct 9, 2012 at 8:08 pm

Photo taken by Jim Laymon, 1982

jlaymon commented about The Strand on Oct 9, 2012 at 7:58 pm

This is a different Strand Theatre, closer to Moorlyn Terrace. It burned down in October of 1937.

jlaymon commented about Strand Theatre on Oct 9, 2012 at 7:57 pm

This is a different Strand Theatre that was between Moorlyn Terrace and 9th Street. It burned down in 1937.

jlaymon commented about Strand Theatre on Apr 23, 2009 at 9:12 pm

Wow. That is a great photo. I had taken one around the same time, but this one is much better. And that site has the Moorlyn and Village theaters too.

Thanks for the link!

jlaymon commented about Strand Theatre on Apr 20, 2009 at 7:08 am

Here is a clip of me doing a changeover at the Strand in 1988…

Those were still the original Peerless arc lamps, with 1950’s Simplex XL’s. Arcs were powered by a Hertner Transverter (generator) in an adjacent room. Rewinding was still done by hand.

jlaymon commented about Surf Theatre on Jul 19, 2008 at 9:08 am

I worked as a projectionist (occasionally) at the Surf in the late 1970’s, just before Shriver’s let go of the lease and Al Kazmark(?) then leased it for rock films.

When I was there, the theatre was owned by the Frank company but operated by the Shriver company. Unfortunately, the Frank company was not about to do any maintenance on the building when a competitor was operating it. So the roof leaked terribly and there were times when we would rope off the first 10 rows of seats because of standing water.

But the building was interesting. It was never meant to be a palace, but there was a very large stage with ropes and sandbags along with a very old dimmer panel. I remember those dressing rooms too. And the spotlight (MT). I remember playing with that too.

The projection room had a large fireproof battery room attached to it to provide clean power for the original sound system (long gone). And from the proj room you could walk through a door out onto the roof of the marquee. That was pretty cool. Start the movie and then check out the girls on the beach!

There was no air conditioning, but there were 2 or 3 very large fan rooms on the roof that exhausted hot air from the ceiling.. Those fan blades were giant.

Anyway, I included a little history of it on my web page:

Thanks for the memories!

jlaymon commented about Strand Theatre on Jul 18, 2008 at 8:30 pm


Thank you very much for your comments. I am thrilled there is someone else who appreciated those old movie houses. I often think that I would do that boardwalk job as a career, if I could eat off that salary—and if the theaters were still intact.

I remember Rollercoaster. That might have been my first or second year there. The general manager had me help remove a bunch of seats so that the sound guys could install the giant speaker boxes that made the “Sensurround” rumbling. A lot of us wondered if the old building would survive that movie, but it did, of course.

And thanks for your comments on the Strand. I also remember the seaside, musty smell of the Strand. Each theatre was a little different. The Strand was the nicest and cleanest. And that, of course, was my favorite too. And although my memory isn’t real clear, if it was the projectionist who let you take pictures, then it was probably me, or I was probably there. I’d love to see them.
And those seats were pretty cool. I was able to snag one before the sale and it is in my basement.
Anyway, thanks for your comments.

jlaymon commented about Strand Theatre on Jun 23, 2008 at 2:40 pm


Yes I think they have torn down all the Adventure Village buildings now. I stopped by there not-too-long-ago and snapped a few pictures of what remained:

It was funny because the demolition guys there didn’t look very friendly at first and probably didn’t want someone poking around their project. But when I said Hi and showed them the old postcards of the place, they really took an interest and let me take all the pictures I wanted.

Lost Memory,

Yep. 70 years old. I almost forgot this is a big birthday year. It opened on August 11, 1938.


Technically, that is the same boxoffice out in front, but it isn’t used. They had promised the Planning Board and Historic Commission years ago that they would keep it. They covered the surfaces with stucco and it has been rotting for a while now (unless someone recently repaired it).

I believe tickets are sold at the side entrance (which was originally the rear auditorium exit).


jlaymon commented about Strand Theatre on Feb 19, 2008 at 5:12 am

Thinking about Zaberers and Charlie Pumpernickels makes me remember the little amusement park we used to visit as kids. It was Adventure Village. It was also on the Black Horse Pike. It was a little town and old west style buildings that resembled a town square with a theater, bank, general store, etc. You would walk around the little town and check out all the buildings. On a regular interval, the Keystone Cops would chase a bad guy around town. So there were amusements and performances.

It wasn’t open long, only a few seasons before it closed. But the buildings have been there ever since, slowly decaying behind a stand of trees. I read now that they are finally going to tear it all down to make way for something new.

Just thought I would mention it.

And back to the STRAND. Those backlit movie star portraits have survived:


jlaymon commented about Strand Theatre on Feb 13, 2008 at 9:12 am

I remember Zaberer’s from when I was in high school. We had a few banquets there. It was pretty interesting. I seem to remember a few different dining areas, a gift shop, photo booth, and lots of decorations.

I don’t know if this link will work, but here is an aerial shot of the Zaberers location.

View link

jlaymon commented about Strand Theatre on Oct 16, 2007 at 5:56 am

That’s a great (1932) picture of the original Strand which was located between Moorlyn Terrace and 9th. It burned down in the fall of 1937 (70 years ago this month). The new Strand was built on the corner of 9th and Boardwalk in ‘38.

Thanks to Ken for posting that picture!

jlaymon commented about Strand Theatre on Sep 6, 2007 at 9:51 pm

Ken, Thanks for the info.
Mr. Faunce owned the business, but Shriver owned the buildings, and after Faunce died, Mrs. Shriver-Schiling decided she would own the business and hire a general manager (Arthur Oehlschlager) to run the Shriver Theatre Company.

Don’t know if this is the same Faunce family as the Absecon road. But D. Roscoe Faunce’s father did own the Faunce Theatre on the boardwalk that burned down in 1927. And his son, Roscoe (Rip) Faunce was a manager while I was there.

The Strand Theatre Company also operated the Moorlyn and Gateway Theatres at that time. Don’t know why they were left out of the almanac. But thanks again for the info!


jlaymon commented about Strand Theatre on Sep 6, 2007 at 5:17 pm

I know the feeling. I rarely eat popcorn!

But Shriver’s is still my favorite taffy!

jlaymon commented about Strand Theatre on Sep 6, 2007 at 4:59 pm

Yep. Shriver’s Taffy was started by Helen Schilling’s grandfather. I believe he was William Shriver. And his son was also William Shriver. Helen, who was in her 90’s when I knew her, inherited the theaters and taffy from her father in the 1940’s I believe.

The taffy business was started in the very late 1800’s.

And the Taffy business was sold to the present owner a long time ago. 1960’s perhaps? The actual property the taffy store sits on was still owned by Helen until she died in the 1998.