Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Who will control the Loew's JC?

The nonprofit company that has managed the Landmark Loew's Jersey Theatre in Jersey City said today that if the city allows Live Nation or A.G.E. to take over the former movie palace, Jersey City will be robbed of a "rounded, cultural institution." City officials announced today that those two concert promoters, the two biggest on the globe, are among four bidders vying to restore and manage the Loew's, a Journal Square institution.
I talked about the tug-of-war over the future of the Loew's Jersey Theatre here before, but in recent weeks, the situation has escalated, and Friends of the Loews (FOL), the volunteer group that keeps the theater in shape, is now facing threats beyond just their local government. They're counterattacking through their website, by presenting the facts about what they've done to preserve the theater and making their case to the public as to why they deserve to maintain control.

Even though it's roughly 21 miles and two rivers away from home, getting to the Loew's is a trip that I gladly make whenever I can, and whenever there's something good playing (which there usually is). Still, prior to the news of this conflict going public, I had never thought of the place as a potential arts center before. The fact that they play old movies was always enough for me. I can't guarantee that I would be able to come out to Jersey City to see plays or concerts, in addition to movies, at the Loew's, but whether or not I could is besides the point. I like this place a lot and I don't wanna see it lose its uniqueness, its distinctiveness. 

If you go to the sidebar under 'labels,' you'll see the Loew's Jersey Theatre tag, which will take you to all my posts about movies I've seen there. Go through some of them if you've got a moment to spare. In a few short years, I've accumulated quite a number of memories from the place. I've taken friends there and made friends there; I've gone on rainy and snowy nights; I've seen silent films and recent Hollywood blockbusters; I was there the weekend before Hurricane Sandy; I've seen old movie stars talk about their careers and learned a thing or two about the grand history of this wondrous movie palace. 

There's a lot to love about the Loew's, and FOL has made it a place worth caring about. They've earned the right to stay in charge of it.

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