Hoosier Theatre

1335 119th Street,
Whiting, IN 46394

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Hoosier Theatre (Official)

Additional Info

Previously operated by: Indiana-Illinois Theaters

Architects: Edward P. Rupert

Firms: R. Levine & Co.

Functions: Movies (Classic), Movies (First Run), Movies (Silent)

Styles: Adam

Phone Numbers: Box Office: 219.659.0567

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News About This Theater

Hoosier Theatre, Whiting, IN

Opened February 15, 1924, the Hoosier Theatre shared a three-story building with the Illiana Hotel (now apartments) and storefronts. It could seat around 650 and originally featured both vaudeville and movies. It was equipped with a Kimball organ, which was opened by organist John Muri.

In 1963, the 4 Manual 28 Ranks Wurlitzer organ from the massive Uptown Theatre in Chicago was moved into the Hoosier Theatre but it was never installed and eventually shipped to California where it has been restored.

In 1987, the theatre was added to the National Register of Historic Places.

Now refurbished, and still a single-screen movie house with a huge, two-story tall screen (one of the only classic movie theatres still in operation in all of Northwestern Indiana), the Hoosier Theatre now seats just over 600, and screens both first-run and classic films, as well as hosting the occasional concert or other live entertainment on its stage. Since October 2017 it has been equipped with an elecronic organ to accompany silent movies.

Contributed by Bryan Krefft

Recent comments (view all 13 comments)

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on October 22, 2014 at 4:18 pm

This house was advertising as the Hoosier Auditorium Theatre in the March 2, 1969, issue of The Hammond Times. It was open Friday through Sunday evenings with a double feature of Thunderball and From Russia With Love, plus a separate kids' matinée on Saturday featuring Tammy and the Millionaire.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on October 22, 2014 at 4:53 pm

The link with the Hoosier Theatre’s history that kencmcintyre linked to is dead, but I think it might be the same document that is available in a pdf file here. There’s no date on it, but it was published after the house had been refurbished and reopened by John Katris.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on October 23, 2014 at 1:05 pm

The Hoosier’s web site indicates that they show quite a few first-run features, so pat of our description is out of date. The current movie is The Book of Life, which was released on October 17.

Long term plans for the Hoosier include adding a second screen in adjacent store space and another screen in a new building to be erected on the vacant lot next door. Eventually, plays will sometimes be mounted on the stage of the original theater.

The “Theatre History” page of the Hoosier’s web site also says this: “A fully installed six-rank pipe organ, collected from various theater venues in the Chicago area, offers another opportunity for live music. Katris is looking for someone to play it.”

Broan on April 21, 2016 at 9:41 pm

Architect was E.P. Rupert for firm R. Levine & Company

local157 on June 23, 2018 at 3:39 pm

Update/correction on the organ:The pipe organ is inoperable. An electronic organ has been installed since Oct.2017. It is used for silent films;the most up to date information about which may be found on their facebook page.

DavidZornig on December 13, 2022 at 8:09 pm

History of the Hoosier Theatre by Anthony Borgo, published in February 2019 by the Whiting-Robertsdale Historical Society.


local157 on December 13, 2022 at 11:46 pm

There are occasionally silent movies shown with accompaniment by Jay Warren who plays his own VTPO. The next one as of this writing is the 1924 silent “Peter Pan”. More information is at: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/silent-film-sundays-peter-pan-1924-tickets-474175330177?

DavidZornig on April 11, 2024 at 12:35 pm

Link to an upcoming auction of items from the Hoosier Theatre. Description credit Badger Corporation:

Historical “Hoosier Theatre” Online Auction @ 1335 119th St, Whiting, IN 46394 www.badgercorp.com John & His Family Bought “Hoosier Theatre” Back In 1991, After It Sat Empty For Quite Some Time. John Couldn’t Let This Historical “HOOSIER THEATRE” Crumble Anymore So Him & His Family Decided To Restore The Building. After Going Through Everything In The Basement & Collecting High End Antique Theatre Pieces He Figured It Was Time To Sell. We Are Honored To Assist John & His Family By Running An Online Auction. www.badgercorp.com This Sale Features; 1980’s Ballantyne Strong 70 MM Projector, 1920’s Diener Copper & Brass Fire Extinguisher, 1920’s Elkhart Copper & Brass Fire Extinguisher, 1920’s Essanay Copper & Brass Fire Extinguisher, JBL Theatre Speaker Packages, 1930’s Copeland Galvanized Ice Box W/ Porcelain Interior, Christie 38-DLV001-01 Event Projector(Complete), TurboChef 941-004-00 Counter-Top Fire Pizza Oven, 1950’s Brenkert Projector Head 35MM, Christie 2002 38-DCP201-102 Commercial Projector(George Lucas), 1920’s Silvertone Victrola 78 Records, 1922 Elevator Dial Brass & Cast Iron W/ Button & Sooo Much More Check Out Our Website For The Full Catalog www.badgercorp.com Auction Start Date/Time: BID NOW!!! www.badgercorp.com Auction Inspection Date/Time: April 17th, 2024 from 10:00AM - 2:00PM Central Time www.badgercorp.com Auction End Date/Time: April 18th, 2024 10:30AM Central Time www.badgercorp.com Auction Removal Date/Time: April 19th & 20th, 2024 9:00AM-4:00PM Central Time www.badgercorp.com


local157 on May 9, 2024 at 7:47 pm

Thank you for the link to the auction,David. I won one item, and was amazed at the collection. I spoke to John when I picked up my item and he said it did not go as well as he had hoped. He is still hoping to sell the theatre to someone who will care for it as he has for the past 33 years. I will try to post photos from the balcony and backstage, which most have not seen views from.

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