The West Theatre first opened on Christmas Day in 1937, the brainstorm of J.B. Clinton and Clarence Kaake. As designed by architect Perry E. Crosier of Minneapolis, it is a streamlined modern variation of Art Deco and originally seated 595 people. Unfortunately, in the mid 1950s the theatre closed. Subsequently the space housed several operations until the early 1980s when it ultimately became vacant for over a decade.
Determined to restore the historic theatre, Boone bought the building for $140,500 on Oct. 5, 2016; with the assistance of Park State Bank and the Northeast Entrepreneur Fund.
Although the auditorium was gutted and the marquee gone, the building was structurally solid and had a newer roof. The lobby was in virtually original condition, though due to materials no longer in production some changes from the original design were unavoidable. The theater required a new marquee, a digital projection booth, HVAC, upgraded bathrooms and much more. The rear section of the sloped auditorium floor was leveled out by pouring a concrete slab the width of the building, 16 feet by 40 feet and 20 inches thick adding a lounge and extra bathrooms.
Nearly three years later, at an overall cost of $1.5 million dollars, The West Theatre had it’s Grand Opening on June 21, 2019
319 North Central Avenue
Duluth, MN 55807