Flash Gordon lights up the screen in 1983.
The Gem Theatre has been a family attraction for decades, as seen in this photo from 1951.
Movie advertisements for The Gem in 1938 display the movie trends of the time.
In 1939, Roy Rogers and The Lone Ranger made an on-stage appearance at The Gem.
The Gem Theatres new lobby on opening day in 1948.
The view from the back of the theater on opening day in 1948.
The view from the stage on opening day in 1948.
An inside look at The Gems projection room in 1957.
In 1959, the line for The Gem stretched all the way around the block!
The colorful seating as seen from The Gems stage in 1973.
Movie fans pack the theater to see Jaws in 1978.
The Gem Theatre uses the marquee to welcome the president to Kannapolis in 1992.
The Gem recognizes Dale Earnhardt Day in Kannapolis in 1993.
By Cristina Wilson | Photography by The Gem Theatre
Posted: Monday, Oct. 31, 2011
This Kannapolis gem opened on Dec. 31, 1936. In 1942, the theater was almost lost to a fire, but it reopened in 1948 with a new lobby and balcony. The Gem is one of the oldest single-screen movie theaters in continuous operation in the country, and one of the few that still offers balcony seating. It has served as a community hub in Kannapolis; its marquee has highlighted some of the most memorable events of the last few decades. Visit this family-favorite spot to catch a modern film in a setting that will take you back to a different time. Even better, its a bargain, with $4 tickets for adults, $3 tickets for kids and seniors, and $3 matinee showings for everyone. www.gem-theatre.com.
The Charlotte Observer welcomes your comments on news of the day. The more voices engaged in conversation, the better for us all, but do keep it civil. Please refrain from profanity, obscenity, spam, name-calling or attacking others for their views.
Have a news tip? You can send it to a local news editor; email firstname.lastname@example.org to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Charlotte Observer. Read moreRead less
The Charlotte region is vast and diverse. The more voices engaged in conversation, the better for us all. The Charlotte Observer welcomes your comments on news of the day, but we ask that you keep the discourse civil.
- Do not use profanity or obscenities. And don't try to camouflage profanity with asterisks, abbreviations or other symbols or foreign phrases.
- Do not use threatening language. Talk of violence won't be tolerated.
- No racial, gender or sexual-orientation name-calling.
- Do not attack other commenters for their views. Do not libel or defame anyone or violate their privacy.
- Keep your comments succinct and stay on topic. Comments that bear no relation to the story may be deleted.
- Do not add images to your comments.
- Do not report comments as abusive simply because you disagree with them. Report them only if they violate these guidelines.
- Do not post spam or advertising of any kind.
- Do not post a comment using all capital letters.
We do not monitor each and every posting, but we reserve the right to block or delete comments that violate these rules.
You can help: Notify us of violations by hitting the "Report Abuse" link. Users who continue posting comments that violate these guidelines may, at our discretion, be blocked from submitting future comments as well.
And finally, as Mark Twain said: "Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest."
Enjoy the discussion.