Comments from AWF

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AWF commented about Center Cinema on Feb 21, 2009 at 2:03 pm

Wow, thanks for that memory – I’d forgotten about the one on Railroad Ave. ! I think it’s just a bit before my time but I do remember passing by it when I was really young. Perhaps the theater I mention above was run by Prudential?

AWF commented about Shirley Drive-In on Nov 20, 2006 at 1:49 pm

To answer your question OX, here’s a link to a great site with tons of info about the Mastic-Shirley area and excellent photos of the drive-in back in the day. Seems that it was some kind of horse ranch in the 40s-50s!

View link

AWF commented about Shirley Drive-In on Oct 13, 2006 at 1:47 pm

It was such a disappointment to me when the Shirley Drive-In closed. I spent many nights there as a kid with my family and later as a teenager/young adult. The whole vibe – watching movies outdoors, hitting the playground before and between shows, the highly questionable hot dogs at the concession, the old metal speakers hanging from your driver-side window – harkened back to a simpler time and is gone from today’s movie experience.

In response to Bway’s post, the concession stand was located approximately in the middle of the property, which would put it in the center of the South Port parking lot, facing Waldbaums with Blockbuster to the right and FYE (or whatever the music store is now) to the left. The building that housed the concession stand also served as the projection booth. The playground was directly behind it.

The drive-in was fenced in on 3 sides – left, right, and behind the screen. Beyond the fence on the right were paths that led thru the woods (which could be accessed by going behind what is now the tire place to the right of the Southport entrance) and ended on a dirt hill that had an excellent view of the screen. You could even hear the movies from all the speakers hanging on their posts and open car windows. This perk serviced many penniless teenage nights for my friends and I.

Too bad all the good stuff seems to always fade away …

AWF commented about Center Cinema on Oct 13, 2006 at 10:30 am

The Center Theatre was located in the King Kullen shopping center on Montauk highway (or Main St.) in Center Moriches. I believe a bank now occupies the space it was in.

I think it started out as a first run theater (I saw “Godfather II” there in ‘74) but later became a discount house. They also hosted occasional rock concerts throughout the years, mostly local bands. Nearby Shirley Twin would sometimes do this also.

AWF commented about Island Cinemas on Oct 13, 2006 at 10:07 am

Does anyone remember the original movie theater in Mastic? It was in the same shopping center that Movieland Cinema of Mastic currently occupies. It opened in the early seventies (‘71?) and sat in the middle of the shopping center to the right of the A&P (which is now Movieland). It was flanked to the left by a chinese restaurant (still there) and to the right by a staionary store (long gone). I think you can still see the outline of the original marquee.

Among the many films I saw there, I most vividly remember catching a glimpse of my 1st “R” rated movie – Hitchcock’s “Frenzy” (‘72) – when I was 9 years old. Much like the nearby Shirley Twin Theatre, they would frequently run day-long weekend marathons of multiple movies, cartoons, shorts, you name it.

I believe it was independently run (my sister knew the couple who managed the place) and lasted for several years until closing in the mid-seventies.