King Theatre

720 12th Street,
Belle Plaine, IA 52208

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Additional Info

Functions: Movies (First Run)

Phone Numbers: Box Office: 319.434.6025

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The King at Night

The King Theatre is located in the downtown section of Belle Plaine on 12th Street and Highway 212. It occupies the main portion of a three story red brick building with the entrance in the middle. Apartments are located on the second and third floors in the front of the building. The King Theatre has a large size marquee and a two story vertical. It is a single screen showing first run attractions.

Contributed by Chuck

Recent comments (view all 6 comments)

rivest266 on December 27, 2013 at 9:17 am

Closed? no showtimes anywhere.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on November 11, 2014 at 11:15 am

This 2012 weblog article about the King Theatre says that it was opened in 1930 by Milton and Sara Mansfield, who had operated the Strand and Rivola Theatres since their arrival in Belle Plaine in 1927. The Strand was closed when the King opened, and the Rivola was closed the following year. The King Theatre has been operated by members of the Mansfield family since opening.

Chris1982 on November 12, 2014 at 9:49 pm

The King Theatre is still open showing current attractions according to the recording when you call the theatre.

SethG on July 1, 2019 at 4:49 pm

As must be obvious from the pictures, the building is yellow brick (with limestone sills/accents), and the marquee is one story tall. The sides are cheaper rough red brick. The original windows have now been replaced by unsympathetic modern ones. Was not running a movie last weekend, but promised Toy Story 4 the next two weekends. Seems to also be used as a community arts theater, according to their FB page.

Lon on June 18, 2021 at 8:48 am

Toured the King Theatre this passed fall. I was looking thru the window and the owner opened the door and gave us the nickle tour. The place is aged but still in operation.

50sSNIPES on August 28, 2023 at 8:21 pm

The King Theatre opened its doors on October 17, 1930 with Ned Sparks in “Leathernecking” with no extra short subjects.

Information about the King Theatre as of 1930 goes as follows: The theater building results were the use of conder blocks for interior walls and soft plaster and gypsum covering each a deadener of echoes which ruin acoustics. Everything that causes echoes form that installation was cut out such as fancy scrolls and projection’s sound equipment of one kind or another. The original interior look featured terrazzo floored lobby with tile and marble ticket booth. The aisle floors were covered with heavy Wilton Saxon carpets underlaid with padding to deaden sound. Stairways were also carpeted as well as the auditorium lobby, which the original capacity of the auditorium as of its opening in 1930 were listed as 700 seats with seat-installations of red upholstered leathered 16 bottom springs and full padded back seats with soft edges, while the backs are of brown velour with red, orange, and blue figure designs. The auditorium floors were oak through the auditorium with floor coverings to the gallery of Wilton Saxton with Ozite padding. The original stage measures 22ft deep and 38ft across. The stage features the original installations of proscenium opening or grand outer drape and closest to the audience which then comes a burnt orange velour curtain on an automatic track, and back of this is a close-in curtain or screen of green silk also carried on an automatic track. These two original curtains' movements are electrically controlled for the projection booth. Back of that is a drop of black and gold denim of cloth and still back of this is a red velour sack-drop which extends all around the sides and rear of the stage. The sixth and last curtain is the sound screen which is 14ft back of the foot lights and is in the size of 14ft6inx18ft. In case of an emergency, there are two rear exists, one on either side of the stage.

The original installations of its ventilation system as of 1930 brings a special attention, with ample-sized hot air furnace during the winter months in which an oil burner is used to generate heat and powerful fans to force the air into the auditorium and outlet ducts under the stage to draw it out. A complete change of air is provided every three minutes as air enters the rooms from grills placed on either side of the stage and is drawn from the room by cold air ducts under the stage, giving a complete air circulation at all times. Sometimes from time-to-time, fresh air outside is added. During the summer months, it was in reverse, with the cool air coming in from the ducts under the stage and the hot air being drawn out through the grills on either side of the stage.

Other original installations include indirect lighting system featuring two full rows of foot lights with each light in a special reflector by the Kilegle Stage Lighting Company of New York. It gives an original soft mellow light touch, and by the use of the system, the operator at the booth may dim or brighten the auditorium by a usage of a switch. There are six large ceiling lights and in walls on either side of six sets of lights set in panels of green art glass. When films are being shown, the light comes softly from the side panel lights and small concealed aisle lights. The wall effects as of 1930 were originally buff and green over a gray background colored being worked into the plastering to give a pink background effect, featuring a soft and soothing touch with its fixtures.

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