By James Ginderske of The Urban Coaster
The Village North Theater, the Rogers Park movie house that showed first-run movies until being shuttered for renovations last winter, has reopened as The New 400 Theater. While residents may know it best by its most recent moniker, the new name actually hearkens back to a previous life when it was known as the 400 Theater.
Under new ownership, the entire facade of the terra cotta building has been restored and the theater itself received a much needed makeover. New carpeting, paint, curtains, and screens, along with extensive seat repairs and replacements combine with the outside work to provide a new destination for summertime distraction.
The completed project is especially welcome by residents during the continuing economic downturn. As finishing touches were completed earlier this month, at least seven residents walked up to ask the workers, “Are you open?”
With property values in decline and unemployment rising, major new entertainment businesses have become rare. This project combines that with the preservation of an historic neighborhood architectural landmark. One passerby was overheard saying: “I thought this [theater] was gone for good. How cool!”
The New 400 Theater is nestled in an area that has several other retail and dining attractions, including the Armadillo’s Pillow bookstore, Royal Coffee (a cafe specializing in pure Ethiopian coffee), The Flatts and Sharpe music store, Rice Thai Cafe, Starbucks, Great Wall Chinese restaurant, RoPa and others.
There are also two large open air cafes for hanging out before or after movies, as well as an enclosed ATM machine.
The theater is located at 6746 N. Sheridan Rd. and will show first-run movies at discounted rates. There is $2 all-day garage parking available south of the theater at the intersection of Sheridan and Arthur.
You can learn more about the current movies and showtimes by visiting their Web site at www.thenew400.com. Ticket prices are $7.50 for General Admission, $6.50 for students (with ID), $5 for Matinées (before 6pm), $5 for seniors (65 and over), and $5 for children (under 11).