Wednesday, November 21, 2012

The New Parkway Theater Opening Postponed

As I previously mentioned, the New Parkway Theater is scheduled to open/reopen on November 30.  Make that "was scheduled."  J. Moses Ceaser sent out an email early Monday morning which read:

 "We’re sadly not going to be ready to open on the 30th.  We’re going to be close, but with Thanksgiving this week, we won’t be able to squeeze in all of the final inspections that we need to officially open our doors.  So we’re looking at a delay of a few weeks.  Not a huge delay, but I want to apologize to all of you who have been looking forward to the big night as we have, and now have to wait just a bit longer.  As soon as we’re 95% sure of our opening night, we’ll send out an email blast to let you know."

The New Parkway has been an astonishing story to me.  I didn't think it would reopen given the delays in negotiating a lease and what I thought was an underfunded budget.  Ceaser should be commended for his tenacity in bringing this project to fruition.

I was becoming skeptical about the reopening because the New Parkway's website has nothing on the grand opening which I think would be well publicized.  The website has nothing regarding future showtimes, admission policies, etc.  I suspect they will launch a new website for the grand opening; either a different URL or a new design.

I've been reading Will Viharo's blog avidly.  Viharo wrote in the initial blog post, "I'll be recounting many more memories of 'Thrillville' and the Parkway in this blog, daily for the next 30 days, counting down to the grand opening of The New Parkway on Friday, November 30, 2012."  The title of each blog post ended with "(XX days until opening)."  That is until November 4 when the posts mysteriously stopped counting down.  

Was the November 30 opening in doubt as far back as November 4?  I don't know.  This isn't Watergate and I'm not Woodward or Bernstein but reading about Will's memories with the original Parkway, I feel like I missed out on something special so I'm going to try to get the New Parkway as often as possible when it does open.

As I get older, Oakland after dark is a little intimidating to me.  A co-worker was assaulted near 19th and Broadway at 9 or 10 PM on a weeknight two or three years ago.  He was on his way to the 19th Street BART station.  That would be the station I would take if I went there and that gives me pause.  I'd have to walk five blocks up Telegraph or Broadway to get to the New Parkway and would likely be returning to BART in the general vicinity and time my colleague was mugged.  However, Oakland does offer a free bus shuttle which runs up and Broadway until 1 AM on Friday & Saturday nights.  That shuttle ends service at 7 PM on Monday through Thursday and does not operate on Sunday.

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