The Biggest Little Movie City


Ithaca, New York 14850, United States

Created By: Ithaca Heritage


The Strand’s neo-Tudor, Collegiate Gothic style was a nod to the college town’s large student population. Cornell students nicknamed it the "Near-Near" for its proximity to campus. A narrow brick and limestone facade opened to a neoclassical interior with ample seating on orchestra and balcony levels. Originally operated as both a vaudeville and movie house, it hosted stage shows featuring well-known actors in the 1930s and 1940s. In the ’50s and through its closure in 1975, the popular downtown venue showed only movies, reflecting changes in the entertainment world. After a short stint as a non-profit arts organization, the building closed in 1982 and remained vacant until its much-lamented demolition in 1993, despite being a locally designated landmark and listed on the State and National Registers of Historic Places. The Canopy by Hilton hotel and its Strand Café now occupy part of the Strand Theater’s former site.

ARCHITECT: Edgar Townsley; Driscoll Brothers Builders


This point of interest is part of the tour: The Biggest Little Movie City


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