It’s been a rough year for Seattle-area movie theaters. Cinephiles and casual moviegoers were collectively bummed when two iconic Seattle theaters closed in June. Now, North Benders are at risk of losing their historic 76-year-old theater.
Owners of the North Bend Theatre, whose vintage façade dots the town’s main drag, have put the old-school movie house up for sale.
“It’s been a huge part of who we are for more than a decade and been one of the most interesting chapters of our lives,” wrote co-owner Cindy Walker in a Facebook post this week.
For the past 12 years, the Walker family has steered the landmark theater through some tough times. In 2013, they launched a successful GoFundMe campaign, raising $107,000 to upgrade to a digital projector in line with contemporary technology. Under their watch, the theater also secured a grant to replace the roof. Beyond showing movies, the theater has hosted a number of community events over the years.
Walker wrote that her family is moving on to a “new chapter” in their lives and the family is seeking $799,000 for the theater built in 1941. The Walkers hope to find a new owner “who appreciates the importance of the North Bend Theatre’s energy in the Snoqualmie Valley.”
“For our family, and me in particular, owning the North Bend Theatre has been an incredible ride,” Walker wrote. “We’ve felt very blessed to be in a situation to have a real impact on so many sectors of our community.”
While the North Bend Theatre’s future remains to be seen, it hasn’t been all doom and gloom for local theaters. On the Eastside, Lincoln Square’s expansion marched on this summer with the addition of a snazzy new high-end theater offering food and drink service right to your seat. Elsewhere, these greater Seattle theaters still have old-school cinema charm, plus modern amenities.