More Sweetwater: Texas Theatre

I received a letter from Mom in the mail this past week that included a newspaper story on the re-opening of the old Texas Theatre in Sweetwater.

Texas Theatre, 1939

The ‘Texas’ is the setting for many personal childhood memories – elementary, middle school and high school.  I can still see it’s wood paneling lined walls, full stage on the mezzanine level and how much cooler it was to watch a film on the second story, or Screen B, in the two-story, two-screen building.

The Texas was opened in 1935 to an excited crowd of patrons waiting to see the comedy “She Couldn’t Take It.”

For me, the Texas was a common destination for weekend mischief – a place to see the newest blockbuster and chase the co-eds.  If my memory serves correct, through the 90’s the Texas changed ownership and moved away from its affiliation with a single distribution company.  It also suffered economic struggles when a new multiplex opened an hour away.

Suddenly it wasn’t a viable option to compete with the stadium seating, surround sound or other bells/whistles that came from the new spot.  Customer based gone.  Bills hard to pay.  And so the cycle goes.

Check out the below video tour found on YouTube (editor’s note – glad that the narrator enjoyed the Meatloaf at the Oak St Cafe… man, i’m reminded of the one-horse town I grew up in and hold so dear to my heart).

The Texas Theatre closed its doors in 2007.

Fast forward two years, and enter Dr. Cody Wilkinson, who, along with other community members, formed the STTAR (Sweetwater Texas Theatre Acquisition & Renovation) committee and acquired the building in 2009.  After almost 18 months of work, the Texas opened its doors again this past week in a showing of Iron Man 2.

A renovated Texas Theatre. Image courtesy of the Abilene Reporter News

You can support the Texas’ continued renovation efforts by becoming a fan on Facebook,  And don’t forget to support your local theater and other small businesses.

  1. Viva la Sweetwater.

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