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Cary to reopen 1940s movie theater; kids movie series planned

Posted February 17, 2014
Updated February 18, 2014

Cary will reopen the town's first indoor movie theater this weekend with a slate of free movies and entertainment.

The Cary was built in 1946 and, over the years, also has been used as a clothing store, auto parts store and recording studio, according to the town. Renovations on the building began about a year ago. After it reopens this weekend, The Cary will host music, live performances, improv, comedy and movies in the 180-seat theater.

The offerings will include a monthly movie series for kids and several summer camps for teenagers and older children, said Joy Ennis, the downtown theater and events supervisor. It will host movie criticism camps for teens in June and July and an improv camp as well, she said.

This weekend's opening festivities begin on Saturday with a "celluloid cutting" ceremony at 9:45 a.m. Movie screenings run all day. Everything is free this weekend.

Here's the schedule:

  • The PG-rated "Waking Sleeping Beauty," a documentary about Walt Disney Feature Animation from 1984 to 1999, is at 10:30 a.m. 
  • The R-rated "Goodbye Solo," about a Senegalese cab driver in Winston-Salem who befriends a man he drives to Blowing Rock, is scheduled at 12:30 p.m.
  • The G-rated Disney classic "Finding Nemo" is set for 3 p.m.
  • "Casablanca" is set for 2 p.m., Sunday.

Seating this weekend is on a first-come, first-served basis.

Going forward, upcoming Kids Movie Mornings will feature the G-rated "Chicken Little," at 10 a.m., March 1, and "Mary Poppins" at a later date. Tickets are $5. A concession stand will have the usual movie snacks and drinks along with beer and wine.

The theater's schedule also includes a Best of the Oscars Weekend with movies like "Out of Africa," "Chicago" and "The English Patient," along with screenings of other classic movies and indie films. While many of the movies might not be appropriate for the youngest kids, there's lots of opportunities here for older, film-loving teens.

For details about the theater, 122 E. Chatham St., check the town's website.


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  • Todd Jenkins Feb 20, 2014
    user avatar

    Fredk…This may be a theater by name but there is so much more the town will use it for. The addition next door will have three floors of meeting space and outdoor eating area. Wait till they build the boutique hotel to benefit from the meeting space. People not in the know, just post here without validity.

  • Fred Kozlof Feb 20, 2014
    user avatar

    Who's buddy cashed in on this stupid project? $6mil for a 180 seat theater, with only 25 parking spaces. Guess the 'town' has money to burn. This will never be financially self supporting.

  • teddyspaghetti Feb 19, 2014

    View quoted thread

    Oh right you are!! Did you know that the town paid for this renovation.....then held a bond vote to pay for $6M for the fire department?????

    This should have been a PRIVATE venture....not one paid for with tax dollars!

  • Todd Jenkins Feb 19, 2014
    user avatar

    Love Cary Haters…It could be a 5 star hotel and give all it's rooms to the homeless and some people would complain just because it's Cary. Live on my jealous friends!!

  • lynne0312 Feb 19, 2014

    What a complete waste of money. Do you know that this renovation cost over $6 million? A single screen theater? There's a reason they closed these old theaters long ago. Agenda 21 is ruining Cary.

  • A person Feb 18, 2014

    PS, sir Walter Raleigh never came to the new world

  • A person Feb 18, 2014

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    Sir Walter Raleigh ended up being beheaded, so where is the pretentiousness???

  • Mark Anderson Feb 18, 2014
    user avatar

    Haters gonna hate. It is called The Cary because that is what the theater was originally called when it was built in 1946 when Cary was a small town. Preserving history is not being pretentious, archmaker. That is like saying Raleigh is pretentious because it was named after someone knighted by England (Sir Walter Raleigh).

  • archmaker Feb 18, 2014

    The name "The Cary" is totally pretentious, and therefore quite suitable.

  • pappy1 Feb 18, 2014

    Are tax dollars going to support this?