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Carolina Theatre

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Carolina Theater was built in the summer/fall of 1934 but was not officially in business until Christmas Eve of the same year opening as a live stage or motion picture theater. The structure had state of the art sound projectors with a seating capacity of 746, 460 on the main floor and 243 in the balcony with 43 seats available for black patrons. The theater also offered new air conditioning with two (2) 25 ton units new at this time. The structure was built by Carl V. Cline and then was leased to John F. Miller, President of Hickory Amusement Company until 1945. After the death of Carl Cline, his estate sold the property to family members forming Cline Realty which included several other properties, who, in turn leased the theater to Colonial Theaters of Valdese , NC around 1947.

There is a time and a place in our lives that hold precious memories. But this "place" is known only to a generation of people who experienced these moments in time. As if carved in stone, the memory of the past, for some, will forever be embedded in our minds and hearts. The experiences of this era can never be touched on again.

John Tate of Newton recalled his memories. Students who didn't participate in afternoon school sports found other ways to occupy their afternoon with Mr. Tate's favorite being an occasional stage show and Saturday night shows at the Carolina Theater. Mr. Tate continues.....shortly after the World War II, my wife, Gray, worked at a record shop between the Carolina Theater and the bowling alley, and remembers a number of the Western stars coming by to plug their records before appearing that night at the Center Theater.

The passing of time and the complexities of this would never lend to forgetting...........
"THE WALK". Kids of the late forties and the rock-and-roll groups of the fifties and sixties know of this walk. It was just a leisurely stroll to the box-office.

On starry Saturday and Sunday nights, hundreds of young boys and girls gathered along the sidewalk leading to the Carolina Theater. Romance was in the air. A ritual was about to take place. The event was both exciting and emotional. After all, it most likely took perhaps a week to prepare for this nightly outing. For a first-date couple, it would have more meaning than one could imagine.

Along the well-lighted street would be parked shiny and elegant cars, the chariots of the era. Classics like the '55 Ford Victoria and sleek '57 Chevrolet Impalas. Other models included Ford's Starliner, Galaxies and Chevy Camaros. A sharp and rare Studebaker Hawk, robed in white and gold was spotted. In the sixties, the ever-popular "Mustangs" were among the parade of automobiles. These cars belonged to the young male patrons coming for the evening's entertainment.

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Hours of Operation: Not Listed
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