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)


Anonymous said...

Address: 428 W. Kennedy Blvd.

1928-1962 Park Theatre

1962-Present David Falk Memorial Theatre (Operated by the University of Tampa)

Anonymous said...

Listed in the 1950 Film Daily Yearbook...428 W. Lafayette (Kennedy)...1281 seats.

Anonymous said...

A Page theater organ was installed in 1928.

Anonymous said...

Seminole, was right behind HHS, it was a Sat. serial kids movie, Sem. Hts, Northtown, very unknown to my crowd, not our stomping ground, Springs, went there most, across from Springs pool, reg. path Sat., swimming a.m., movie after, also kids serial type, most well-known among Seminole Hts kids, Roxy, not us, too bummy, Garden, Green bldg, Nebraska ave, not on our list, out of our area, not too popular with us, never went there, Ybor City, Ritz, it also was a burlesque place in the 70s, porn movies, changed quickly. All of we High Schoolers were Drive-in nuts, Fun Lan, Tower, Hillsboro, Skyway, AutoPark, that was where we went in high school, only went to movies when I was around 5 yrs until 12 or so, Park Theater, was a one time visit while in High School, Three Coins in a Fountain, I remember, Bridget Bardot movie was a sensation there, not in our territory. I lived on Shadowlawn and 19th St. our first house, we took kids to Fun Lan, they loved it, we did too when they went to sleep, that was when the three dependents were very small. That's about it for me and the theatres, The Tampa, The Springs were my favorites, went to Springs almost every Sat. 14 cents to get in, my aunt was in ticket box. In Junior High all of us hung out mostly, Springs Pool, Ralston Beach, Colonial Beach, all on Egypt Lake, we danced to Juke box combed our Duck Tail haircuts, messed with the women, they also messed with us, that's fair! All of us guys had Elvis haircuts, and clothes, Pink and Black, was the color, I had Blue Suede Zipper shoes with tassle pulls, a real heart-breaker, tough guy, I thought. You name the place in Tampa, I've either been in it, know of it, or been thrown out of it, in 70s never dropped a drink, that went on for about 10 years or so, then rehab. then back to the grind, been here ever since, haven't seen it all, but didn't miss much!

Anonymous said...


The Park Theatre was opened in 1928 as a vaudeville/movie theatre. During the 1940's it is listed as being operated by Paramount Pictures Inc. through their subsidiary E.J. Sparks. By the early 50s, it is shown as being part of the Wometco chain.

Since 1962 it has been taken over by the University of Tampa as a live performance facility.

Contributed by John Evans, Ken Roe

John said...

The Page theatre pipe organ in the Park Theatre was one of few featuring two consoles. The main console of three manuals was in the pit on a hydraulic lift; and there was a second two manual console situated on the stage.

Kelly said...

St. Pete Times, April 26, 2002:
David Falk worked in his family's business, a department store on Franklin Street.
The 1928 theater, directly across Kennedy Boulevard from the University of Tampa, is named for the only son of a Polish immigrant father.

David A. Falk was born in Tampa in 1896. He graduated from Hillsborough High School, attended Washington and Lee University, and served in World War I. When he returned to Tampa, he joined his father in the family business, O. Falk's Department Store, which was downtown on Franklin Street.

Falk also served at the executive level of various real estate, banking and industrial concerns in the area. Among his numerous civic posts, he was president of the Tampa Chamber of Commerce, a member of the state welfare board, director of the Tampa Housing Authority and Florida State Fair, and head of the Florida Merchants Association for nine years.

But it was service on UT's board of trustees from 1948 until his death in 1960 that earned him the commemoration of the David Falk Memorial Theater.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know or remember any stories of Bessie Snavely? She was an actress who used to perform at the Park Theatre and supposedly hanged herself in the top-level dressing room. Her ghost is supposed to haunt the Falk Theatre. Does anyone have any knowledge of where the old playbills for the park Theatre may be where Bessie performed? Does anyone have any photographs of Bessie or know where I can get some? I am writihng a book on the Ghosts of Tampa and would appreciate any information anyone can give me. Please respond to my personal email address: I will appreciate anything ANYONE can give me or point me in the correct direction.

Rob McCabe--Writer.