Magnificent North Park
Theater Reopens

Photos, video and article by Christina M. Abt


north park theater first ticket buffalo events


On November 21, 1921, Buffalo entrepreneur and businessman, Michael Shea, opened the doors to his most opulent
movie house to date. It was set on Hertel Avenue on the outer rim of the Queen City, just north of Fredric Olmsted’s 30- acre Crown Jewel, Delaware Park. Thus was born, Shea’s North Park Theater.



The 1,222 seat cinema was designed by Henry Spann and boasted opulent features such as crystal chandeliers, stained glass windows, soaring pilasters, marble floors and two hand painted friezes by respected artist, Raphael Beck. Yet at the core of the North Park’s popularity was the simple fact that for more than nine decades it was a neighborhood gathering spot for movie lovers of all ages. That, in and of itself, made the North Park Theater a Queen City treasure.
Like any Grand Dame, the North Park entered the twenty first century revered and respected, but definitely diminished from her original grandeur. Buffalo’s movie goers were passing-by the local Grandmere of cinema in favor of plasticized, modern cineplexes. Fewer ticket sales meant fewer dollars for renovations and repairs. And when the Dipson Theater Chain announced that they would no longer present films on the North Park’s screen, it seemed possible that the house lights would be forever dimmed.



Enter attorney, Thomas Eoannou and restauranteur, Michael G. Christiano, Buffalo guys who grew up with the North Park as part of the fabric of their lives. They remembered the beauty and grace of the aging theater. More importantly they knew the value of Shea’s cinema in the overall quality of life for the Hertel Parkside Community. So they committed their passions, their time and most importantly, their money to not just keeping the aging theater alive, but making it a vibrant neighborhood movie star once again.
Last night was the grand opening of the restored North Park Theater and grand was definitely the buzz word of the evening. From the rediscovered marble foyer floor to the unearthed burgundy- accented concession stand, to the meticulously restored murals claiming center stage alongside the massive silver screen, Michael Shea’s opulent movie house vision was clear and impressive.



As patrons lined up out the door to purchase tickets, as surrounding restaurants accommodated theater goers for dinners and drinks, as celebratory movie goers filled the theater with their memories of their past and imaginings for the future, it was clear that the most significant part of the North Park Theater had been restored. The hub of a community was once again in place, weaving the lives of people of all ages together in a remarkable story….just like in the movies.
Information on The North Park Theater and movie features / times can be found on the theater website.


North Park Theater Chandeliers
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Gardens and Villas of the Italian Lakes

Fri Jul 18 - Mon Jul 27 | Start Time: 12:00 AM
Buffalo Botanical Garden, Buffalo

The Botanical Gardens, in conjunction with Collette Vacations and the Royal Horticultural Society, present an incredible trip to Northern Italy! Join us as we embark on a trip of a lifetime! Reserve today!

M & T Third Fridays

Fri Nov 21 - Fri Dec 18 | Start Time: 10:00 AM
Buffalo History Museum, The, Buffalo
M&T THIRD FRIDAYS welcomes the community to the Museum, Resource Center, and select events free of charge.
Every month, M&T THIRD FRIDAYS’ visitors will experience new programs, family events, entertainment, docent-led tours, and more.  Members always receive free or discounted admission to special happenings.
Through this support, M&T Bank demonstrates commitment to WNY and the mission of the History Museum. The sponsorship package emphasizes program offerings, inspires opportunities for collaboration with partner venues,  and provides diverse opportunities for engagement with the community.

A Christmas Carol

Thu Dec 11 - Sat Dec 20 | Start Time: 12:00 AM
Alleyway Theatre, Buffalo

Don’t be sold out of the nation’s fifth longest running stage version of Dickens’ masterpiece. Our delightfully faithful adaptation will shift your spirit into high gear as Scrooge, Tiny Tim and the Alleyway Carolers warm the cockles of your holiday heart for another joyous season!



Show-times :

Thu & Fri at 7:30 PM
Sat at 5 PM and 8 PM
Sun at 2 PM


General Admission = $30
Student/Child (through college) = $20
M&T Discounts = M&T Bank employees.