Thruway 1 & 2
310 S. Stratford Road,
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Previous Names: Thruway Theater
News About This Theater
- May 21, 2010 — Happy 30th, "Empire"
The Thruway Theatre was opened on February 16, 1969, under Wilby-Kincey Corporation. It was twinned on June 17, 1977 under ABC Theatres as the Thruway 1 & 2. Carmike Cinemas acquired the theatre in 1991, and operated it until it was closed in 1994.
I worked at this theatre in my senior year of high school back in 1984-1985 (“Beverly Hills Cop” and “Thief of Hearts” were playing). Worked there as a projectionist in years following high school. Largest theatre, must have had 600 plus seats.
Many great memories….scraping toast off the ceiling after “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” midnight runs, seeing “Billy Jack” as a kid there (my first ‘walk in’ theater experience), that VERY spooky basement that had a casket stashed amid the popcorn bags and cups, making out with concession stand girl’s sister in broom closet, hearing that our old box office guy, Mr. Poplin, ‘expired’ while in the box office booth, taking crap from a cantankerous manager with a runny eye (ewwww!), changing the marquee in snowstorms and rainstorms, and SOOOOO many other memories.
Since closing in 1994, it is now a Party City store. It was also situated next to a trendy bar and steakhouse so it was not unusual to see golddiggers dressed to the nines to attract Winston-Salem’s wealthiest at all hours of the evenings. One of the former projectionists painted the projection room to resemble the cover of Pink Floyd’s Dark Side Of The Moon!
There is a time capsule (or WAS a time capsule) outside of the theater from the year theater was built in 1969 that supposedly contains artifacts from that day it opened.
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