Jollo Moving Picture Theatre

2103 Avenue B,
Kearney, NE 68847

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Jollo Electric Theatre Company

Functions: Opera House, Skate Park

Previous Names: Model Opera House

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When Kearney’s New Opera House opened in the impressive Opera Block on June 2, 1892, the existing Model Opera House with its massive 1,200 seat auditorium struggled to find its new identity. The Model Opera House was best known post opera bookings for the skating rink. Seat count was reduced to just 600 by the end of its operation.

In 1907, R.H. Mouser opened a franchise of the Jollo Electric Theatre Company Circuit in the Model / Old Opera house. It launched on September 9, 1907 as the Jollo Moving Picture Theatre and was Mouser’s second local Jollo Theatre. The Jollo business model appears to have been to identify existing venues like the old opera house in Kearney desperate to find a steady source of entertainment income. Operators generally were fairly transient and reportedly not forthcoming with their end of the revenue sharing pie.

The Jollo exited Kearney quickly, in part, because the new opera house dabbled in motion pictures and new theatres playing films were built. A skating rink was why most folks patronized the former opera house. A 1915 story in the local newspaper explained the demise and razing of the Model Opera House.

Contributed by dallasmovietheaters

Recent comments (view all 3 comments)

dallasmovietheaters on August 17, 2020 at 4:18 am

Looks like it may have ceased operations in 1910 at that location.

rivest266 on November 1, 2022 at 2:46 pm

The Opera House opened on May 1st, 1891. 1891 and 1907 grand opening ad posted.

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