Duluth’s West Theater to Reopen on Friday

The marquee of the 1930s era West Theater reads "We Love You, Back Soon" and now that's finally a reality for staff to open the doors again or everyone who loves this historic spot.

DULUTH, Minn. – As businesses slowly begin to open back up around the Northland, it’s showtime once again for the West Theater in Duluth.

After being closed for months due to the pandemic, the silver screen will be lit again with revamped policies for those who attend including mandatory masks.

“I don’t think there’s anything in life with a guarantee but I think our theater is very well positioned to do the best possible job for it,” the West Theater’s owner Bob Boone said about keeping people safe while allowing them to enjoy movies.

The marquee of the 1930s era West Theater reads “We Love You, Back Soon” and now that’s finally a reality for staff to open the doors again or everyone who loves this historic spot.

“If we make it as safe as possible it’s a good place for families to go and still have a good time,” said Boone.
Safety is the main focus. The theater will only allow around 25 percent of patrons, around 60 guests, per movie to maintain proper social distancing.
They are also using special software to make sure theater chairs are blocked off properly.
“You’ll have an empty row in front of you an empty row behind you two seats to the left and the right,” said Boone.
Along with social distancing, temperature checks will happen upon arrival.
The theater will also be deep-cleaned each night, along with consistent cleaning throughout the day.
“We’re cleaning the bathrooms and solid surfaces every hour, we’re taking everyone’s temperatures coming in and then We’re going to into the auditorium and blocking it off for an hour and doing the cleaning of every seat that was occupied in the last film,” said Boone.
Masks are mandatory for patrons and staff unless eating or drinking and even though masks can be a hot button issue for some, the theater’s owner has no problem turning away someone refusing to mask-up.
“Then they’re leaving it will certainly cost us some business and I’m not worried about it a bit. It’s just the right thing to do,” says Boone.
For even more peace-of-mind, Boone says he has a state of the art air conditioning system moving air in and out of the theater.
Starting Friday, the theater will show classic and current films such as E.T., Jurrasic Park, and 1917.
Beginning the following week, the theater will host 55-and-older Wednesdays for those who may be older and more vulnerable to the virus.
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