Garrettsville – The lights are coming back on at Garrettsville Cinema at 8009 Main Street. The Garfield Plaza movie theater is now under new management, renovated and updated with digital projectors and surround sound. New tenant Justin Dlugokecki of Showplace Theaters plans to re-open “the new and improved Garrettsville Cinema” on Friday, March 7, with showings of “Mr. Peabody and Sherman”, “Winter’s Tale”, “Lego Movie” and “Robocop”. Check back at www.showplacetheaters.net for current updates.
The Dlugokecki name and small-town family entertainment have been a natural match in Garrettsville for the past 24 years, with the Roller Hutt skating rink, Tikki Treats Snack Shack, and Halloween-season’s Fortress of Fear haunted house and scream park, all at 10268 Hewins Road, owned and operated by their parents, Craig and Linda. Justin and his brother Jason grew up in the local entertainment business, providing skating lessons and competitive speed skating to local youth, then developing the above-mentioned spin-offs to their already popular hotspot.
Now in his 30s, Justin was previously the general manager of Marquis Cinema (now CineMark) in Aurora. He purchased the Andover Showplace movie theater three years ago. So when the former leaseholders TBE Theatres failed to renew their lease for Garrettsville Cinema in January, Justin jumped at the chance to expand his movie business and return to his old stomping grounds. Justin and his wife, Desiree, reside in Mantua, where Desiree serves as a firefighter.
Cosmetic updates will be obvious as soon as you walk back through the doors. Gone are the pink walls, concessions counter and old carpeting. The entire electrical system has been replaced, new panelling and ceiling tiles are installed, all rooms have been repainted, a new concession counter is under construction, and new carpeting will soon be laid.
Justin had hoped to replace all of the seating in the three viewing rooms before re-opening, but that budget went to replacing the old 35-millimeter projectors with state of the art NEC digital projectors and JBL Sound Labs surround sound. New staggered slope seating with six additional inches of legroom and armrest cupholders are on their way, but you’ll already be blown away by the improvements in your movie-watching experience, Justin promises.
Justin says, going from film to digital projection and from mono to digital stereo surround sound is comparable to going from a black-and-white television to LED TV… it’s that much brighter, clearer and flawless in both audio and visual aspects.
Beyond the traditional showings of new box-office hit family films, the new Garrettsville Cinema will feature monthly midnight Saturday shows for adults, showcasing retro classics like Rocky Horror Picture Show (complete with a theatrical troupe to lead you through the paces with appropriate props), Night of the Living Dead, and Spaceball.
Weekday Happy Hour will take place every weekday between 5 and 7pm, with 50 cents off box office ticket prices. Another new feature is $3 Thursday. Every Thursday, with each paid movie admission, get a medium soda and medium popcorn for $3.
Look also for Sunday Brunch noon matinees with free pre-showing coffee and bagels.
Weekend birthday party packages, private movie or Playstation parties, and business meetings for impressive multimedia presentations are also options at the new theater.
The previous movie house was known for its low ticket prices. Justin assures, “As of right now, we are not planning on raising the ticket prices for movies.”
Another common question from theater-goers is, “What about the gift certificate we purchased as a Christmas gift?” Justin says, “We will honor previously purchased gift certificates for box office tickets only. No gift certificates or passes will be honored at the concession stand. All passes and gift certificates will need to be redeemed by June 1, 2014.”
Justin also says, as an independent local owner, he is not obligated to play extensive trailers before the feature film. “If we post start time as 7pm, the movie will start at 7pm.” The theater will be operated by Dlugokecki family members, who are working to rebrand the Garrettsville Cinema and create a unique family theater and community gathering place. As Justin puts it, “Every change we make is for the better.”
The main office of Showplace Theaters is located in Mantua. It can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 330-235-3400.