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These distinguished theaters, all on the National Register of Historic Places and originally built within two years of one another, are enjoying restorations and rebirths in beauty and purpose.
By MEGAN ROSSMAN
Photography by JOHN JERNIGAN
The Ramona Theatre may be the closest thing Frederick has to a palace. Built in 1929 by local banker James Beard—and named for his daughter—the theater with a Spanish Colonial façade and Mediterranean courtyard interior was designed by architect George Kadane, whose family were well-known regional independent film exhibitors. The Frederick Arts and Humanities Council rescued the theater from years of neglect in 1983 with an initial investment of $12,000. “Twelve of us suckers put our names on the note,” says council president Dana Greer, “but the community has been wonderfully supportive.” Today, amid the scrolling red gum woodwork and beneath a starlit blue painted sky, patrons at this 485-seat arts center—which hosts musical acts, community events, and movies—enjoy the building in all its fully restored grandeur.
The Ramona Theatre is located at 114 South Ninth Street in Frederick. (580) 305-5689 or ramonashows.com. To see more of John Jernigan’s photography, visit his Contributor Photo Gallery or johnjernigan.com.