Arion Theatre

73-26 Metropolitan Avenue,
Middle Village, NY 11379

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Showing 1 - 25 of 88 comments

robboehm on March 8, 2014 at 1:09 pm

1928 ads describe the Arion as “The Home of Talkies” although, perhaps not the first to be wired for sound as indicated in the overview (see later comments).

VacantLots on September 15, 2013 at 1:16 pm

To tommacny,

Sir, you’re the best! I’ve waited for years to both find a place/person where I can ask the question and then also get an answer. Thanks to you, yet another lost puzzle piece of my life has been found. :–)

Thanks for the info on the upper level. I’m not surprised that I got it wrong. Memories start to fade and/or blur together. I know now that I was confusing the Arion with the movie house on Queens Blvd. where they used to show the movie, “The Rocky Horror Picture Show,” at midnight. Am I remembering that correctly or was that still another theater? The layout I’m thinking of had bathrooms and the projection booth on the upper level.

As far as the gent with the speech impediment goes, I remember a fella taking tickets and giving the patron back a stub while Ms. Zakar sold the tickets in the booth. I don’t know if that was the same man.

BTW, I’m sorry it took me this long to get back to this site.

Thanks again for the info.

Best regards,

Spencer Wulwick
Spencer Wulwick on August 30, 2013 at 11:33 am

Actually, I would like very much to hear from anyone who has info about Middle Village — or who would like access to info about Middle Village – including old stuff, current reunions etc. or call (954) 9002994

Spencer Wulwick
Spencer Wulwick on August 30, 2013 at 11:32 am

revchuck – or any other members of the Hillowitz Family – I would appreciate your getting in touch with me to exchange information about Middle Village.


Spencer Wulwick
Spencer Wulwick on May 18, 2013 at 4:09 am

Can you use html code in comments? I’m trying it here.

Spencer Wulwick
Spencer Wulwick on May 18, 2013 at 3:58 am

Wow! I hope some of you are still around because I just found this site and am absolutely ecstatic about the comments from Middle Villagers.

I have a website called that is all about Middle Village with many stories, tons of pictures and updated on a daily basis.

I would love to have more information about the owner of United Cigar Stores, etc. etc.

Please go to the website and send me an email so we can communicate with one another.

I’m especially anxious to hear from revchuck because I lived 2 blocks away from that luncheonette and need more information about it. Likewise, for poe197, berternie, vacantlots and tomnacy (my mother was a friend of Rita Zakar and Rita has attended one (at least) of our annual Middle Village Reunions in Florida.

You can also reach me at (which stands for My Middle Village Love Connection

tommacny on August 10, 2011 at 3:00 pm

Just found this site—great—the name of the lady who sold tickets and candy was “Rita Zakar” and she lived around the corner on 75th st on the hill. There was no upper level in the Arion. Do you remember the male matron inside who had a speech impediment who always told you to “PUDDA FOOT DOWN”

VacantLots on June 4, 2011 at 12:10 am

I remember the Arion with great affection, and I’m glad to see so many have equally-fond memories. I remember being a kid and seeing movies like “Tales From The Crypt”, “Night of the Living Dead” (orig. B&W – 1968 ?), “The Gang That Couldn’t Shoot Straight”, “Oliver”, heck, even “The Sound of Music”.

I remember being told by my parents to buy candy outside because it was a better value, but Milk Duds and other stuff just wasn’t the same unless you got it in those large “movie house boxes.” I remember going up to the counter and being served by a woman with short blond hair. She was also the ticket seller before the movie started. Everybody that I talk to about the Arion remembers her but can never tell me her name or if she even lived in Middle Village. She’s sort of a part of history without a name. Can anyone help me out with this?

Talking about the candy counter, the popcorn in those huge tubs was also something that a lot of us looked forward to on a Saturday afternoon.

Another part of the Arion that I remember was the upper level. I’m a little fuzzy on this one so jump right in and set me straight. You walked past the candy counter (screen and seating on your right) and went toward a staircase and then walked left and up the stairs. Upstairs was the projection room and the bathrooms. Am I on-track here or am I in another theater? If anyone can fill in details, that would be great.

I’ve rambled on long enough, but I have one last thing to add: I remember being told that there was an apartment above the theater. I was told it was accessed by opening the door that was used to access the back of the movie-poster displays (the door fronted the street (Metro.)). Any truth to this, or was this just another way of pulling the wool over the eyes of a naive kid? LOL

berternie on May 31, 2011 at 11:16 pm

Cut alot of classes at Grover Cleveland to go to the Arion back in the 70’s. Adults $1.00 Kids .50. Some days the projectionist would also run the snack bar. Would have to leave his post and run up the stairs whenever the projector would fail in the middle of the movie.

poe197 on February 13, 2011 at 10:19 am

We lived on 74th Street right down from the Arion. My parents, my brother and I would go to the theater every Saturday and Sunday evening. I’m 74 now and In can still remember the sights and smells of the Arion—that funny stale air-conditioned smell; the candy booth in the rear (Raisinettes, Jujubes); the matron who got to know us; the ticket seller who also knew us (we were such regulars that she kept charging my parents for two children’s tickets, even though we were way beyond the age.
During the summer, we would stop off at Grube’s Ice Cream Parlor. I would order ice cream, because Grube would give us a drink of ice-cold water. In the ‘40s, we had no ice, so ice-cold water was a super treat.
Across the street was the United Cigar Store, with Ben Hillowitz the owner
When I was in high school, I worked at Oscar’s a toy store that shared a building with the Thrift Pharmacy, run by the Saffron brothers. I worked from Thanksgiving to January and two weeks in the summer when the toys and games were delivered. I was paid $20 per week

revchuck on October 23, 2010 at 8:50 am

My father owned and operated the Luncheonette on the corner of 78th Street and Metropolitan Ave from 1940 thru 1950. We lived behind the store. My sister still lives on 78th Street near Juniper Valley Road. I graduated fro PS 87 and Grover Cleveland High School. Moved away in 1957.
I remember the Arion Theater well. From the Saturday Matinees with 2 feature films, cartoons, a serial episode, Pathe News, and coming attractions. Later it was make-out heaven for us teens.
Still miss that town and the theater. Had great friends there, great memories.

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on May 14, 2010 at 8:51 am

Arion photo on ebay.

View link

johndereszewski on November 7, 2009 at 11:56 am

As of a week or so ago, when I passed it on the bus, the situation with the old Arion had not changed since my March 14 post.

Bway on May 26, 2009 at 9:08 am

Any information on what is happening now on the site?

johndereszewski on March 14, 2009 at 5:10 am

It seems as if the drug store that replaced the Arion is now gone for good. (The link comes from the Queens Crapper blog, which you should access in case it doesn’t come out here.)

View link

tomcory on March 2, 2009 at 6:41 pm

Ticker, I remember the Flatow Brothers fruit store! They always had some kind of straw/hay strewn about the tile floor. One of the brothers, I remember, was named Murray. They were nice guys. Most of all, I remember the smell of fresh produce there…it’s right in the forefront of my sense memory. Everything was so fresh and ripe. If I close my eyes, I can bring the place right back.

By the way, my folks still live in the town, and I go back to Carlo’s Pizza most every time I visit. It’s still the best slice of pizza in the world to me—and yes, Carlos' sons always remember me too. They’re the kind of guys that make a neighborhood great.

schmidberger on March 2, 2009 at 4:12 pm

Remember the Arion well, I live in Florida now and I take my kids to the movies with 20 movies to choose from stadium seating and a great sound system, but I still enjoyed the Arion.I tried to explain to them about the Arion, with 1 screen but they just didn’t get it, said I was old…yeah… Arion was just different sticky floors and all.. Use to go to Carlo’s for a slice of pizza and italian ice after movie… Try to get up to MV once a year just to walk around the old neighborhood. I do stop into Carlo’s each time for Several slices,(can’t get good pizza in Tampa) and Carlo’s son still remembers me each time I go in. I'am his long distance customer… upset when I went to Willy’s and it wasn’t there anymore….Anyone remember flato brothers? fruit store it was by Flamms, and the Stop clothing stores.

horsnaround on December 14, 2008 at 9:55 pm

A friend of mine is liquidating the shelving presently. He has come across walls of the original Arion Theater & architecture. Feel free to stop in for old times sake & picture taking! He’ll be there until Thursday morning December 18th!

richborutta on November 1, 2008 at 1:25 pm

The Arion Theater was the focus of many of my Sat afternoons while growing up in MV during the 1950s. I remember the 25c admission and the 6c candy. They also had a 5c popcorn vending machine that gave small but better tasting popcorn than the popping machine at the candy counter that replaced it. And I saved the penny from the 6c my parents gave me for candy.

The Sat matinee was usually horror, comedy or westerns. At one point, they were giving toy prizes to the kids attending the show. The first week they gave us bottles of bubble soap and blowing wands BEFORE the feature. The theater was filled with bubbles and the matrons couldn’t throw all of us out. After that they gave out the prizes as we left.

Thanks to all for the great comments on this site.

Decembra on October 29, 2008 at 4:00 pm

:) You’re one in a million Tony— the Scheinfeld’s were fantastick people, as well as their in store help (businesses today should be that good).

With holidays around the corner — I will be visiting Metropolitan Ave. in Middle Village.

Loved sharing the memories.

tomcory on October 28, 2008 at 6:01 pm

Of course, I remember Scheinfeld’s! We shopped at the Men & Boy’s store next door to Kopp’s Bakery, across the street from the women’s store. I was friends with the Scheinfeld boys, actually. We worked at the same summer camp up in the Catskills. Besides being a terrific store, they were the finest, nicest family one could ever hope to meet. Thanks for sharing the memories! T.C., N.Y.

Decembra on October 28, 2008 at 3:05 pm

Thank you TONY :) …and it just so happens that in my best childhood friend’s possession are most the 45’s (which are like 40yrs. old now) in her basement — the music still sounds good — they just played that music on PBS — “My Music, My Generation”. She is holding onto a goldmine I believe. Thanks again for remembering the name of that corner shop.

…btw…do you by any chance remember the Scheinfeld clothing stores over there?

tomcory on October 27, 2008 at 6:55 pm

Decembra—That was Midville Radio & TV where you used to buy your 45’s. I bought mine there too! They used to keep the 45’s in a spinner rack with the titles and artists hand-printed in black magic marker below each of the slots. I hate to sound like an old man, which I’m not, but those were truly great times to be a kid! TC

Jeffrey1955 on October 27, 2008 at 5:49 pm

While we’re at it, the description at the top of the page should probably be changed. It says “it is now a Genovese drugstore” — but there ARE NO Genovese drugstores anymore. Genovese was taken over by Eckerd; Eckerd was taken over by Rite Aid. So you could say it is now a Rite Aid drugstore… but with the way things have been going, it would probably be safer to just say “it is now a drugstore”!

Decembra on October 27, 2008 at 4:57 pm

Thanks for posting about Willie’s — you’re so right!!! — the best hot dogs and knishes on the face of the earth —in Middle Village anyway :) About Zweibel’s — I’m not sure. However what I do remember that at the very corner down from Willie’s was I where I always brought my 45’s — oh the memories :). Again — thanks for posting about Willie’s. …and yes — I know this is a website about the Arion Theatre, but one hand washes the other — it’s nice to reminice back in the ole neighborhood where the Arion once stood.