Garden Theatre

Address: 301 Main
City: Frankfort
State: MI
Zip:
County: Benzie
Notes:
Open:
Capacity:
Owner History: Bill Griffin
Number of visits to this page: 8932
Info Updates:
3/2/2021 - Andy Gray
The Garden Theater, at 301 Main Street in Frankfort, opened in August 1924. My Uncle Bud's Johnson Construction Co. theater job list shows this as a 1947 remodeling project by his father Al's company. The "art moderne" style of the Garden Theatre is consistent with a 1947 remodel. Current images of the theater, which remains in use, show three pairs of green doors with paired half-octagonal glass panes. These match the patented "Johnson doors" used in several of Al Johnson's other theater projects of the era. Unfortunately, my grandfather left behind no 35 mm slides of this theater project. The Garden Theater website says "On December 30, 2020, The Friends of The Garden Theater, a charitable organization, purchased the Garden Theater and continues with fundraising efforts to save the theater for future generations." It also indicates that the theater hosts a film festival each October.
6/20/2009 - John McDowell
From 9and10news(Cadillac, Michigan television station) 6/19/09

The renovations are complete on a run-down Benzie County movie theatre. Its new owners hope it can thrive like they say it once did decades ago.

The Garden Theatre in Frankfort re-opened last night after a near 150-thousand dollar renovation project.

The new owners recently bought the theatre because they wanted to bring it back to life.

"It was very run down. The seats were held together with duct tape and bubble gum," says Jenny Schmitt, one of the new owners.

With the help of volunteers, the owners installed new seating, fixed the walls and ceiling, scrubbed the floors, and upgraded other odds and ends.

"I think there''s a lot of hope that it will be another thing that draws people into our downtown restaurants and shops and gets people to Frankfort," she says.

The workers across the street at Betsie Bay Inn are eager for the extra business the theatre may bring.

"Have dinner and a movie and stay right here," says Jan Erlewein, Accountant at the Inn.
12/19/2003 - Box Office Magazine
August 1959 - Mrs. Jean Griffin is continuing operation of the Garden Theatre at Frankfort following the recent death of her husband Lawrence. Clive Waxman of Independent Theatre Service is handling the booking and buying of film.
12/18/2003 - Box Office Magazine
February 1959 - Bill Griffin is reported the new owner of the Garden at Frankfort.
 Photos:14
Garden Theatre - 2009
2009
Garden Theatre - FALL 2017
FALL 2017
Garden Theatre - Photo from 5/9/2010
Photo from 5/9/2010
Garden Theatre - 1950S PHOTO FROM PAUL
1950S PHOTO FROM PAUL
Garden Theatre - SUMMER 2003
SUMMER 2003
Garden Theatre - AUDITORIUM BEHIND THE SCREEN FROM KARA TILLOTSON
AUDITORIUM BEHIND THE SCREEN FROM KARA TILLOTSON
Garden Theatre - AUDITORIUM FROM KARA TILLOTSON
AUDITORIUM FROM KARA TILLOTSON
Garden Theatre - AUDITORIUM LIGHT FROM KARA TILLOTSON
AUDITORIUM LIGHT FROM KARA TILLOTSON
Garden Theatre - AUDITORIUM WALL FROM KARA TILLOTSON
AUDITORIUM WALL FROM KARA TILLOTSON
Garden Theatre - LOBBY FROM KARA TILLOTSON
LOBBY FROM KARA TILLOTSON
Garden Theatre - MARQUEE FROM KARA TILLOTSON
MARQUEE FROM KARA TILLOTSON
Garden Theatre - OLD SHOT OF THE GARDEN FROM POST CARD (newer photo)
OLD SHOT OF THE GARDEN FROM POST CARD (newer photo)
Garden Theatre - OLD SHOT OF THE GARDEN ON THE LEFT (newer photo)
OLD SHOT OF THE GARDEN ON THE LEFT (newer photo)
Garden Theatre - SUMMER 2003
SUMMER 2003
WaterWinterWonderland.com © 2021 Over 48,388,274 Served