Crown Aspen Hill Theatres
13729 Connecticut Avenue,
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Previously operated by: Crown Theatres LLC
Architects: Victor Smolen
Previous Names: Aspen Hill Twin Theatres, Apen Hill 4
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The Aspen Hill Twin Theatres Theatre was opened April 22, 1970. I lived about two miles away from it. Good sized auditoriums.
The architecture of the building was nothing special as it was built into the middle of a middle class white bread suburban shopping strip. And I do mean strip: One straight line of stores. One deep, hot asphalt parking lot in front of it. There was a Peoples Drug Store and a magic/novelty store (my second fave hangout), as well as various come-and-go little shops.
Some of my fondest movie events were at this crappy little movie house. “The Poseidon Adventure”…played there for six months straight. I saw it eight times.
“Jaws”…six months or more. I saw that 14 times. I lied to my dear old mother that I needed money and a ride to go see some Charlie Brown summer camp movie when I really snuck into “Tales From The Crypt”. Oh, how my heart raced at the forbiddeness of it all (I was all of 11, mind you!)
I saw “The Golden Voyage of Sinbad” there. Just the right age to be wowed by it, too.
But, the most fascinating thing about that little two screen place…the thing that I so vividly remember to this day, was the interior manager’s office. Several times, upon entering the dim, carpeted, narrow hallway to either screening room 1 or 2, I would pass by the open office door. The entire office was plastered from top to bottom with classic movie scenes and posters. And I don’t mean just simple movie murals, as is common today. I mean true black and white original posters! King Kong, Dracula, Frankenstein Meets the Wolfman, Casablanca, Garbo, W.C. Fields…
A few times I would pause, dawdle…hover. Meekily peering into that office. To deathly shy as a geek kid of 11 to ask anyone there if I could look closer. No, it was like the teacher’s lounge at school, a forbidden zone.
What I would give to pull that wallpaper from the walls of this since closed “House of Dreams”.
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