Written by Jill Nossa Thursday, 17 April 2014 00:00
Movie lovers once again have a chance to see first-run films in the theater without having to travel far. Glen Cove Cinemas re-opened last week, with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and free films offered to celebrate the occasion.
“Thanks to all of the support we have here and all of you, Glen Cove is once again open for business,” said Mayor Reginald Spinello at the ceremony, held outside the theater on Thursday, April 10. “We were scheduled to open last week, and there were a few things that weren’t ready...I got a call from the theater operator, Jay Levinson, and he told me that unfortunately, that day Spiderman had the flu,” he joked. “But, Spiderman is well and Glen Cove is well, and we are coming back strong. This is just the beginning. This is going to be so good for Glen Cove and the surrounding communities.”
Assemblyman Charles Lavine said, “For me, this is a meaningful personal moment...it is a great moment for our little city of Glen Cove. It’s tough for me to admit, but almost 30 years ago, I had the unique opportunity to serve as the lawyer for the Community Development Agency. Our responsibility was to help to develop and guide the development of this particular piece of property. I got to listen to many different developers offer their proposals for what ought to be on this spot, and the CDA made a determination that the best use for the citizens was for this to be a movie theater. No sooner did we make that determination than the city was sued to stop the development. We were pitted up against a powerful law firm...and we won...so, for me to be here today is a personal triumph.
“What’s more important is that this is a major triumph for Glen Cove,” Lavine continued. “Movies are integral to our community; it will help our restaurants and our stores. It’s a super day for all of us, it’s a super day especially for the little ones, because they’re going to spend a lot of time here.”
Mayor Spinello then introduced Levinson, saying, “Here’s the man of the hour.”
“What made me interested in this theater is that, when I was a boy, there were three theaters in Glen Cove,” said Levinson, noting that the first movie he ever saw as a child was Around the World in 80 Days, which was released during a time when Glen Cove was
“very popular” and movies like that had an exclusive engagement in Glen Cove.
“Unfortunately, times change, towns change and the way the studios do business certainly changed, unfortunately not for the better,” Levinson continued. “The problem with the movie business today is we depend on making money on the candy stand rather than the theaters because we pay such a high percentage to the studios.”
He said the theater would try art films in addition to family films, and they will have tables and chairs set up in the lobby with a big screen to watch old favorite television shows and honor actors who have passed away.
On the day of the grand re-opening, the cinema offered free admission until 6 p.m. as well as free popcorn and soda. Levinson acknowledged the mayor’s office for their assistance with the opening, and said they
got them a grant for the marquee. “We look forward to a long run,” he said.
“As a mom of three young kids, I’m so happy,” Legislator Delia DeRiggi-Whitton said to Levinson. “Thank you so much because I love having them here, I know that they’re safe. I’m so happy you’re keeping this going.”
Brian Mannix of Babysitting Barter was at the event promoting his site and his collaboration with Glen Cove Cinemas on a Friday night “Date Night at the Movies.” He said that local sitters can sign up to sit for Friday nights via the website and parents can more easily find someone to care for their children while they go out to the movies. Visit www.babysittingbarter.com and www.glencovecinema.com.