State Theater

1217 State Street,
Santa Barbara, CA 93101

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Additional Info

Architects: Clifford A. Balch

Nearby Theaters

Closed State Theater

I believe it was built in the early-1940’s, across the street from the Granada Theatre in Santa Barbara.

In the 1980’s, it was gutted and the seating area was transformed into a arcade. In the late-1980’s/early-1990’s, it was converted again into retail stores and a recording studio, erasing all traces of its movie past.

In the late-1990’s what was left was razed and permanent retail stores were built.

Contributed by Scott Padrick

Recent comments (view all 12 comments)

MagicLantern on May 24, 2004 at 5:40 pm

City directory lists it first in 1942, at 1219 State Street (but you know how malleable these street addresses were over time). It closed around 1981. The Rose Theatre was at 904 State Street and was last listed in 1931.

MagicLantern on July 8, 2004 at 6:19 pm

A Unity Shoppe thrift store now resides at this address.

GaryParks on July 8, 2004 at 9:07 pm

During its time as a video arcade in the early 1980s, the moderne styled marquee with abundant neon remained intact.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on November 15, 2008 at 5:50 am

Southwest Builder & Contractor’s issue of June 23, 1939, carried an item saying that Clifford Balch was preparing plans for a remodeling and expansion of the State Theatre at Santa Barbara. Work was to include a 57 foot extension at the rear of the building.

The August 29, 1941 issue of SwB&C mentioned that the owner of the State Theatre was, at that time, Earl O. Calvert. Calvert was also the owner of the Lompoc Theatre in the Santa Barbara County town of Lompoc, and a few years later opened the La Mesa Theatre there, as well.

TLSLOEWS on February 20, 2010 at 2:49 am

No photos? Man there must be hundreds of STATE THEATRES, I know LOEWS had many named STATE>

Jeff Hall
Jeff Hall on October 10, 2013 at 5:17 pm

I worked at the State Theater in the early 60s while attending Brooks Institute of Photography. I remember one night Fess Parker came in to watch a movie. It was a great job while going to Brooks. Anyone else work there?

Jeff Hall
Jeff Hall on August 9, 2014 at 8:37 pm

I visited Santa Barbara a couple of years ago and it looks McDonalds is on this site now. I wish I could remember the name of my boss back in the early 60s. I really enjoyed working there.

Jeff Hall
Jeff Hall on July 24, 2015 at 11:41 pm

Anyone work at the State Theater in the 60s? If so please email me. I have a question

DavidZornig on May 14, 2017 at 12:06 am

1967 photo added courtesy of the AmeriCar The Beautiful Facebook page.

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