An old Broken Arrow cinema gets a facelift in Hollywood.
It’s in New Orleans Square, a neighborhood the city has struggled to attract more business to. The colors on the outside are purple, green, and gold to suit the New Orleans theme. Building owner Robby Winford says he wants people to feel like they’re on Bourbon Street in Broken Arrow.
“Just to have a place where the whole family can come and watch a movie and enjoy their family,” Winford said.
Winford owns a section of buildings on South Elm Place. He bought the old cinema building about a year ago and when a previous tenant’s plans failed he decided to bring it back to life.
It’s called the New Orleans Square Theater.
“My vision is going to be like a Mardi Gras party. Everyone come in, we’re going to give them pearls and we’re going to have a good time,” Winford said.
Winford says inside there will be a bar and eight cinemas. He says there will be unique seats like bar stools, rocking chairs and recliners. Plus, he says concessions and tickets will be cheaper than typical movie theaters.
Winford says the plan is to show comedies, new releases, and locally shot movies like The Outsiders.
“We just want to bring this part of town back to life,” Winford said.
“By the way, that used to be the place to be in Broken Arrow. It was the place to be,” said Steve Yoder, Retention and Business Development Coordinator for the Town of Broken Arrow.
Yoder says the old theater has been vacant for about a decade.
He says it’s full of memories for a lot of people who grew up in the movies in Broken Arrow.
“Lots of first kisses here, lots of first dates here,” Yoder said. “And people really love this area because that’s where they grew up. The first PG-13 movie they ever saw, or whatever, you know the first R-rated movie.”
Soon the theater will regain its former glory.
“We hope that Broken Arrow will come and support it, as they have done before,” Yoder said.
The owners are planning a smooth opening with a free movie at the end of October.