The little theater that could

Published 7:00 am Friday, December 11, 2015

Today, after more than 10 years, the city of Waveland will once again have a movie theater.
In 2005, two days before Hurricane Katrina devastated my home, I watched the movie “Red Eye.”
It wasn’t a particularly remarkable movie, but I remember it as being the last one I viewed in Choctaw Cinema before the water and winds destroyed it.
Some people tried to open the theater again in 2009, but failed to remove the mud-covered seating and make other necessary repairs to the building.
In 2013, while working at the Sea Coast Echo newspaper, I covered the exciting news that the Watzke brothers planned to revamp the old theater. I, along with many, was happy to hear the plans the brothers had for the beloved theater.
According to a recent article in the Sea Coast Echo, the cinema will have four screens with high-backed seating, a new ticket booth and a candy counter covered with copper pennies.
I remember the excitement many of Picayune’s residents felt when the news broke last year that Acadiana Cinema was purchasing and renovating the Cinema IV theater.
I’ll admit I was a bit jealous at first, but happy another option for family entertainment was opening here. There has been much growth not only in Picayune, but throughout the entire county during my time here.
This is a great place to be and I’m always encouraged and excited when I get the chance to cover a new and exciting business opening here.
With the opening of my childhood cinema, many residents won’t have to make the drive to Slidell or Gulfport to watch a movie. Although they may not offer all the major blockbusters, I’m sure they will have something that will pique everyone’s interests.
Lastly, it’s a welcoming sign of recovery. For years, I’ve driven past the damaged theater and remembered the Sunday afternoons spent there with my dad during my youth.
There is still life and hope in Waveland and it brings joy to my heart to see it awakening once again.

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