Hit the road last Thursday for the annual (27th) Anniversary trip to Pennsylvania Dutch country. The first half of the trip, we battled the Nor'easter monsoons and flooded roads.
But then, on Sunday, we ventured further eastward to the little town of Phoenixville, PA.
That's Phoenixville, PA -- where they filmed the horror classic The Blob! in 1957. The Blob starred Steve McQueen and a pre-Helen Crump Aneta Corsaut as teenagers whose necking is interrupted by a meteor transporting the eponymous monster to earth. They, along with their goofy friends, try in vain to get the townspeople to believe the Blob is on the loose, devouring anyone in its path.
Remember the climax of the movie, when The Blob oozes into a movie theater packed with teens (and a cranky creepy old man) at a midnight Spook Show? Mayhem ensues....
Well, the theater is still there, still operating, and slowly being restored to its mid-Century glory...
I had to crop out the entrance doors (which still have the great circular windows), because of the heavy equipment parked in front.
At 12:30 each Sunday, the volunteer group working the restoration and expansion gives a tour of the theater. It's free, informative, and a cool chance to wander around into places not normally available to the public -- like the projection room (where The Blob slurped up the projectionist before oozing through the little square windows onto the unsuspecting crowd below).
Here's the Projection room, with its vintage 35mm projectors, and a view out into the theater.
Here's a view back up toward the balcony. There's a little plaque with a piece of fake blob to the right.
After the tour, they show classic 35mm films at 2:00 each Sunday afternoon. Last Sunday, as part of their October Halloween filmfest, they showed a double feature of Universal's House of Frankenstein and House of Dracula. Now, I of course have both of these films on DVD, but there's nothing like seeing them in 35mm in a great old theater.
So, my wife and I grabbed some fresh-popped popcorn, two boxes of candy, and a large soda (diet coke, of course!) and headed up to the balcony (dead center, front row) to enjoy the show.
Total Cash outlay -- $28.00 (!!) ($9.00 each for the tickets, and $10 for the concessions)
Why not show The Blob!, you ask? Well, the theater hosts an Annual Blobfest each July, so I suppose they want to keep it in reserve only for that.
And to top things off, a local artist created custom posters for the shows. I had to have these.
The theater also does Saturday matinees for kids (last weekend was The Goonies), and midnight showings of Rocky Horror Picture Show.
I encourage anyone within driving distance to visit Phoenixville and The Colonial Theater and show their support. There are too few of these theaters around. Here's the website: