Since the gloom-filled announcement of the closing of Hertel Avenue’s North Park Theatre in 2013, new owners have been pumping tens of thousands of dollars into a full restoration of one of Buffalo’s few intact 1920s movie houses.
Opened by Buffalo movie magnate Michael Shea in 1920, Shea’s North Park has been thrilling and entertaining moviegoers in North Buffalo for more than 95 years.
The image above, with a marquee promoting Lilian Harvey and Lew Ayres in “My Weakness,” probably dates from the year that film was produced: 1933.
North Buffalonians will note the much less imposing signage on the front of the theater. The now-iconic neon glow of the current North Park sign didn’t debut until 1941. At the same time the new sign was erected, a new Carrier air conditioning system was installed, providing “the latest developments in the science of healthful cooling.”