Princeton University, which owns the Princeton Garden Theatre on Nassau Street, has made an agreement with Renew Theaters, a nonprofit organization with 21 years of experience running community movie theaters, to run the Garden as of June 1.
Renew runs three historic movie theaters in Pennsylvania: the Ambler Theater in Ambler, the Hiway in Jenkintown, and the County in Doylestown. “The University is excited to welcome Renew Theaters as the new operator for the Garden Theatre,” said Kristin Appelget, Director of Community and Regional Affairs for the University. “The theater serves the entire Princeton community — town and gown — so we are especially interested in the diverse programming that Renew offers.”
The Garden Theatre opened in 1920 with a showing of the silent film Civilian Clothes. It is currently leased by Garden Theatre Inc. The University purchased the theatre in 1993 and renovated it in 2000-01. Last summer, the analog projection system was upgraded to a digital cinema system with new projection, surround sound, and movie screens. Renew plans to further improve the design, operations and services. The theatre will be closed for a month while renovations are carried out.
“This is a wonderful opportunity for Renew,” said Renew Executive Director John Toner. “We are very community based in our operations and we are looking forward to forming partnerships with local art groups, service groups, student groups and faculty members who might be interested in using the theater.”
The company schedules film discussions, introductions by local experts, and question-and-answer sessions by filmmakers and industry professionals.