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Jackson Newspapers - Ripley, WV
  • Historical community landmark turns 75 years old in December

  • A historical community landmark will turn 75 years old near the end of this year. Thanks to the efforts of Main Street Ripley, a grant from the West Virginia Department of Culture and History as well as volunteers, fund-raisers and donations this landmark has been restored to its former glory...


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  • A historical community landmark will turn 75 years old near the end of this year. Thanks to the efforts of Main Street Ripley, a grant from the West Virginia Department of Culture and History as well as volunteers, fund-raisers and donations this landmark has been restored to its former glory and now stands for future as well as the older generations.
    The Alpine Theater opened its doors to the public for the first time on December 25, 1935. During 1935 the Depression left 21.1 percent of Americans without jobs. Germany succeeded in passing the Nuremburg Law that allowed the government to rob the Jewish population of their civil rights. The Sultan of Swing, Babe Ruth, hit his 714th home run, which was the last home run of his career and a Dupont chemist created nylon.
    Although money was tight, the theatre provided many folks with affordable entertainment. For the cost of a quarter for adults and 15 cents for children, locals could see a movie or enjoy live performers from the Grand ol‘ Opry.
    The theater was in operation for approximately 49 years. It was in 1984 that the Alpine closed and was relegated to serving as a storage facility.
    Main Street Ripley bought the theater in 2003, with hopes of preserving and making the Alpine into a center for entertainment in the community once again.
    Said Board Member Monnie Landis, “The most important thing we would like to emphasize is the 75th anniversary of the alpine. On November 24 we are going to have an open house. Students from Ripley High School will sing carols and then after that we will be showing movies of Ripley. We will show the old movies until 4 p.m. The carolers will visit merchants and sing to them. People can come and go and watch as long as they want to and we will have light refreshments on that day.”  
    Secretary for the Board of Directors Sally Blessing stated that additional plans for the celebration are being added as they  A historical community landmark will turn 75 years old near the end of this year. Thanks to the efforts of Main Street Ripley, a grant from the West Virginia Department of Culture and History as well as volunteers, fund-raisers and donations this landmark has been restored to its former glory and now stands for future as well as the older generations.
    The Alpine Theater opened its doors to the public for the first time on December 25, 1935. During 1935 the Depression left 21.1 percent of Americans without jobs. Germany succeeded in passing the Nuremburg Law that allowed the government to rob the Jewish population of their civil rights. The Sultan of Swing, Babe Ruth, hit his 714th home run, which was the last home run of his career and a Dupont chemist created nylon.
    Although money was tight, the theatre provided many folks with affordable entertainment. For the cost of a quarter for adults and 15 cents for children, locals could see a movie or enjoy live performers from the Grand ol‘ Opry.
    Page 2 of 2 - The theater was in operation for approximately 49 years. It was in 1984 that the Alpine closed and was relegated to serving as a storage facility.
    Main Street Ripley bought the theater in 2003, with hopes of preserving and making the Alpine into a center for entertainment in the community once again.
    Said Board Member Monnie Landis, “The most important thing we would like to emphasize is the 75th anniversary of the alpine. On November 24 we are going to have an open house. Students from Ripley High School will sing carols and then after that we will be showing movies of Ripley. We will show the old movies until 4 p.m. The carolers will visit merchants and sing to them. People can come and go and watch as long as they want to and we will have light refreshments on that day.”  
    Secretary for the Board of Directors Sally Blessing stated that additional plans for the celebration are being added as they go along.
    Said Blessing, “A lot of people want us to show movies, but the cost of say old movies like the Old black and white Frankenstein costs  $175. Anything recent the price goes up to $300 or more.”
    According to Landis Main St. Ripley supports the Alpine. “We try to have enough events to where we can help pay insurance and utilities. And we apply for grants.”
    Blessing explained that the theater often partners up with the Jackson County Players, the library and Arts at the Alpine, which helps out.
    As for the rumor about the theater shutting down, Landis stated that the rumor is untrue. “That has never been a topic of discussion even among ourselves. As long as we are here, it will never shut down.”

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