Monday, September 1, 2008

Rex Theatre

Maceo Theatre

Grand Theatre (Downtown)

December 1920 (Incorrectly labeled by the Burgert Brothers as the Grant Theatre )

1932 (Outlet Store)

September 2017 (The Franklin Sports Bar and Lounge)
Photo taken by Marty Kledzik, featuring Nick DiMaggio

Palma Ceia Theatre

1952 Movie Program

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Park/Falk Theatre (Downtown)

Location: 428 West Kennedy Boulevard (formally 428 West Lafayette)
Status: Currently the David Falk Theatre (operated by the University of Tampa)

Circa 1930's

Circa 1930's

February 1945


Date Unknown

August 13, 1959


(Photo Credit: drewcjm)

Royal Theatre at El Centro Espanol de West Tampa (West Tampa)

Carver Theatre (West Tampa)

Location: 1605 North Boulevard
Status: Demolished

July 6, 1958

July 7, 1959

Northtown Theatre (Seminole Heights)




Garden Theatre (East Tampa)

Location: 907 20th Avenue
Status: Demolished

March 16, 1927

Date Unknown

August 21, 1943

July 30, 1945

Springs Theatre (Sulphur Springs)


2009 (Springs Theatre, Inc - Audio and Video Production)

2009 (Springs Theatre, Inc - Audio and Video Production)

Casino Theatre at El Centro Espanol de Tampa (Ybor City)

Location: 1526-1536 East 7th Avenue
Status: Centro Ybor restaurants, comedy club, shops, etc.




2010 (Tampa Improv)

2010 (Tampa Improv)

Tampa Theatre (Downtown)

Current Website:

Greeson Theatre (Downtown)

Lincoln Theatre (Central Avenue)

Location: 1117 Central Avenue
Seats: 700
Status: Demolished

Courtesy of Nick DiMaggio:

 July 6, 1958

January 1969
"The Lincoln Theatre was one of two Negro movie houses located in the segregated business district on Central Avenue near downtown Tampa. The first listing in the city directory appears in 1944 although it may have opened towards the latter portion of 1943. Ads for the Lincoln Theatre did not appear either in the movie listings nor the theatre time clock listings of the Tampa Tribune until 1958 making it nearly impossible to pinpoint the exact opening date.
I recall seeing the building many times over the years although it was from a distance of about two blocks away. The building was approximately a half-block long as best as I can remember so it was a good-sized theatre. Unfortunately I have no resources available for number of seats and who the owner/operator may have been.
Photos of the building are practically non-existent. In the two photo archives for the Tampa area there are just a few shots of various buildings in the Central Avenue business district including a couple shots of the Central Theatre which was located one block north of the Lincoln Theatre. Elusive as it may be I’ll continue searching and I’ll post any photos I’m able to find.
In a published interview with a local who had grown-up in the Central Avenue area during the 1950’s and 1960’s, a story emerges about how excited the kids were when they would bring in the gorilla on Saturdays at the Lincoln Theatre. For about 15-cents admission they would get to watch several local guys wrestle the gorilla! Whether the gorilla was real or a man in a costume was never revealed. He also mentioned many musicians both local and famous performed on the Lincoln’s stage over the years.
The very first ad published in the Tampa Tribune appeared in the generic theatre time clock listings on July 6, 1958. Double features were the standard programs along with cartoons and serials. Based on the ads Westerns appeared to be especially popular and played frequently.
Then in January 1969 the Lincoln Theatre began running ads for X-rated films. These films ran through February of 1969 and afterwards disappeared from the listings for good. No further ads were published beyond this date.
The adult film ads were published daily as a small boxed-ad in the general listings along with other theatres evidently in the hopes of attracting a wider audience in addition to the locals.
The last year the Lincoln Theatre appeared in the city directory was 1970. More than likely it closed shortly afterwards. The building was demolished along with the entire Central Avenue business district in the early-1970’s as part of urban renewal. Several buildings in the area had also been burned or damaged during the riots that took place in the late-1960’s.
Today the area is a wide open grass field with a small portion used as park with a cement ramp for skateboarding. Central Avenue itself no longer exists within the few blocks that were once the former business district. The street was covered over and absorbed as part of the large grassy field. A portion of the land is currently being cleared for future development."

Additional Info:

New Prince Theatre (Downtown)



1958 (Rodante Shoe Store)

Central Theatre (Central Avenue)

Location: 1201 Central Avenue
Status: Demolished

March 5, 1934

August 22, 1942

Seminole Theatre (Seminole Heights)

April 1926

August 1926




2009 (Praise Cathedral)