Casino Theater

708 Broad Street,
Central Falls, RI 02863

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Functions: Housing

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Casino Theater

I accidently came across a listing for this theater from a very early Pawtucket/Central Falls City directory.

It is listed as 472 Broad Street until 1925 and then the address changed to 708 Broad Street as it remains today.

The theater originally opened as the New Casino Theater in March 1913 and changed names in 1919 to the Casino Theater. The words “moving pictures” was added to the theater location in the city directory in 1918. The theater ran until 1929 but I am having doubts as to the closing date.

I passed the theater name around to a few older citizens of Central Falls and they remember the exact location. I need to ask them for more information as to how the theater operated.

As a young teen in the late-1960’s, I actually attended this hall for local rock concerts and was aware of the stage and what appeared to be a stage booth.

Contributed by Roland Lavallee

Recent comments (view all 11 comments)

Roland L.
Roland L. on April 21, 2005 at 2:19 pm

Gerald, yes, it is directly across from the Central Falls Credit Union on Broad St. in Central Falls.

Here’s a picture of the building.

View link

I went to this building today and to make a long story short, the owner approached me on Broad St because I was snooping around.

I explain that I would like to take pictures of the theater but he said they were putting in apartments. I KNOW they were not up to the third floor yet.

When pressed a little further about the theater, he did tell me that the stage area still exists. I asked if I could have his permission to take pictures of the theater but he denied.

Gerald, I walk with a cane and I believe he said no because of the insurance liability due to the small interior construction that was going on.

If you go to this locale, the entrance is just to the left of the HR Block sign with the 708 address. There is a white button that I believe is the general buzzer for the contractor which I believe is the owner. He looked dusty!! The building is NOT occupied yet.

I truly believe that if I were NOT disabled and needed a cane, he would have let me up there. I have this very, very empty feeling because I was not able to go up there because it’s only a matter of time before the stage area is destroyed.

If you walk down Foundry St. and look up towards the third floor windows (no curtains) at the end of the building, you can still see the door that led to the stage area. Also, note the fancy ceiling work of the late 1800’s. The stage area is NOT small. If you look the windows closest to Broad St, you can still make out the area that I believed was the projectionist’s room or lighting control for the stage.

Here is a picture of the stairway to the second floor.

View link

Roland L.
Roland L. on April 21, 2005 at 9:27 pm

Gerald, you unknowingly took a picture of this Casino Theater!! Take a look at your Holiday Cinema photo. Look just above the blue building in that photo to the row of white windows. That is the third floor of the Jacques Cartier building where the Casino Theater resided!! It is the Foundry St. side of the building. Nice job!!

Roland L.
Roland L. on April 21, 2005 at 10:49 pm

Through my error, I completely left out the fact that this theater was situated soley on the third floor of the Jacques Cartier building.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on April 22, 2005 at 2:30 am

I shall take a peek at the place today.

Obligata on April 27, 2005 at 7:04 am

Dear Gerald and Roland,
Thank you for your comments and research on the theatre’s of Pawtucket and Central Falls. I grew up on Clay Street in the 60’s and 70’s and remember many fond trips to the Holiday Cinema, the Leroy, Darlton…My last trip to the Leroy was to have seen Jethro Tull, but the performance was cancelled. My mother still lives in CF and I get back there at least once a year. My grandfather used to own Bill’s Bowlaway, which is now the Credit Union Central Falls parking lot. It’s sad to see what has happened to my hometown, and I can’t drive down Broad Street without feeling melancholy

Even as a kid, I always hoped to have the money to buy the Leroy or the Holiday with a friend of mine from Cross St and save it. I guess that stuck with me…as I am now the director of The Ritz Theatre in Tiffin, OH, a restored 1928 movie palace. If you ever find yourself in Ohio stop on by and see what can happen to a theatre when people care.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on January 17, 2011 at 3:36 am

This theatre was part of the September 1923 6th Paramount Week. In this advertisement from the (Providence) Evening Tribune, September 1, 1923, we see a fascinating list of Rhode Island area theatres, many long-gone and long-forgoten, or even unheard of, as well as what they were showing during that week. CLICK HERE and move image to see all theatres.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on February 8, 2011 at 12:37 pm

Announcements of what’s playing at Pawtucket and Central Falls movie theatres in November, 1921:

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on February 12, 2011 at 4:46 pm

A 1919 Providence News article reported on certain Central Falls and Valley Falls theatres violating the state prohibition on Sunday film exhibition. READ ARTICLE HERE

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on January 18, 2021 at 1:35 am

The Casino Theatre opened in March 1913.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on February 10, 2021 at 8:46 am

The Gem Theatre, mentioned in a 1909 ad, was at the corner of Broad and Foundry streets, as was the Casino. I believe the Gem might have become the Casino or that the folks that opened the Casino might have used the same hall used by the Gem folks. That’s my guess.

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