Merrick Theater

163-06 Jamaica Avenue,
Jamaica, NY 11432

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Century Theaters, Skouras Theatres

Architects: Drew Eberson, John Adolph Emil Eberson, R. Thomas Short

Functions: Gymnasium, Retail

Styles: Adam, Streamline Moderne

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News About This Theater

Merrick Theater

The Merrick Theater opened in 1920, at 163rd Street and Jamaica Avenue in the Jamaica section of Queens. A recent drive-by indicates that the façade of the former Merrick Theater appears to be well intact.

With a 2,500 seating capacity, the Merrick Theater would have historically been the third largest theater in the neighborhood, after the Loew’s Valencia Theatre and Loew’s Hillside Theatre.

Contributed by SteveSmith

Recent comments (view all 42 comments)

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on May 29, 2012 at 9:17 pm

Tinseltoes… I know this is a pet peeve of yours (and it bugs me, too) but I think the address ribbon to which you refer is a function of how the database is organized. Not that I have a lot of experience at developing and mapping out websites, but I do believe that it isn’t a matter of fixing the ribbon as it is of getting the database organized into more logical geographic buckets. In other words, it is likely not going to be a quick and easy fix.

Willburg145
Willburg145 on October 5, 2012 at 2:28 pm

There is indeed a gym, Blink Fitness, occupying the theater.

robboehm
robboehm on April 10, 2015 at 3:32 pm

Uploaded current Jamaica Avenue photo showing Merrick as retail space.

robboehm
robboehm on August 29, 2019 at 7:41 am

Uploaded 1930 ad showing under the management of Century Theaters. In later years under the Skouras banner but returned to Century at the end of its days.

robboehm
robboehm on October 14, 2020 at 1:21 pm

Although the heading for the Merrick places it as third in size of the Jamaica theaters, at the time of it’s opening it was advertised as Jamaica’s largest playhouse.

Willburg145
Willburg145 on April 1, 2022 at 8:47 pm

I assume the interior was completely destroyed?

spectrum
spectrum on October 15, 2023 at 10:09 pm

From the street view, I can see through windows cut into the side of the auditorium showing track lighting along a flat white ceiling. Whether they gutted the auditorium or simply put in a drop ceiling I cannot tell.

Matt Lambros
Matt Lambros on October 16, 2023 at 8:27 am

The inside was gutted. Not sure if it happened before the gym, but it’s gone now.

BrianWilson
BrianWilson on October 31, 2023 at 8:20 pm

Way before Blink Fitness 1979 the second floor had roller skating called Jamaica roller dome. I remember going there and chating with the manager and the DJ. The place had a GLI sound system and LiteLab lighting system. The ceiling of the rink was a drop ceiling. They offered me to see the DJ booth but to get to it I walked through a door and climbed up an old dark staircase along side rubbish which I knew was part of the top balcony. At that point I could look across and see the original ceiling to the theater with wires holding up the drop ceiling. It looked so beautiful though some spots had water damage, it felt like being in a time capsule.Then walked down the other side steps to a door that led to the DJ booth.

robboehm
robboehm on October 31, 2023 at 8:27 pm

Spaces are repurposed but original ceilings are usually there albeit hidden.

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