Weekend Date: The Logan Theater

Date Category: Saturday Date
Neighborhood: Logan Square (Northwest side)
Expect to Spend: Around $14 for two movie tickets alone; $20-25 with snacks; If you hit the lounge beforehand, expect to spend around $35-50 for drinks, movie tickets, and theater snacks for two

The Logan Theater has been around for decades.  Formerly a family owned and operated theater showing mid- and last-run movies for three bucks a pop, the Logan was one of the last cheap theaters in Chicago.  I have a special place in my heart for theaters like the Logan because, as a child, my father and I used to spend Sundays at the Village Theater in Old Town.  We would watch double features for $5 and then he would take me back to my mom's place.

The old Village Theater...$2.50 a ticket!!!

These theaters barely exist anymore, though, and Logan was one of the last.  When A.P. and I first discovered the theater, we fell in love.  For one thing, the tickets were, again, $3 a piece! For another, it's right up the street from us, in Logan Square.  Plus, even with a bunch of snacks, our total tab for the night would be just above $20!  What a cheap date night, huh?

So, when the theater closed down and put "Under Renovation" on its marquee, we were a bit concerned that that was the end of the theater.  We waited for months and months, sure that like other local businesses that undergo renovation, it might come back a commercial nightmare or it might never come back again.  Instead, quite the opposite happened.  When it did come back (and it was behind schedule in its reopening), it came back in all its glory.

Besides unearthing beautiful original marble and a beautiful stained glass window above the entrance, they replaced the old, stinky seats with comfortable, reclining ones.  They also added a bar!  That's right, before you hit the theater, you can grab a drink in their lounge.  The ticket prices did go up, but are still way cheaper than a regular theater at $7.

We didn't have time to grab a drink, but we did get to sit in the lounge for a bit before we could enter the theater for our movie (we saw 21 Jump Street, btw, which was surprisingly hilarious!) and it was warm and inviting. The vibe of the theater has changed, too.  It used to feel like this hole in the wall that people headed to when they wanted a cheap night out.  Now, it feels like a charming neighborhood theater.  The theater was filled families, hipsters, couples, and groups of friends.  It was bustling and busy and the staff was so nice.  Plus, the decor is fantastic.  The attention to detail is phenomenal with vintage movie posters hanging on the walls.  There's now a fancy sitting room outside the ladies room and a rad vintage telephone booth.

I really hope the theater is successful and will be around for a long time.  I also hope they don't have to jack up prices and will still be able to provide the level of service that they are currently able to offer.  A.P. and I will for sure be returning to the theater soon and next time, hopefully we'll get to sample the bar's finest beforehand.

For pictures of the renovation as well as the "after" photos (which are way better than my point and shoot pictures), click here.

(Village Theater Photo via Chuckman's Photos on Wordpress; All Other Photos by Me!)

1 comment:

  1. what a beautiful theater! i love seeing them in different cities.


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