Family Favorite Series at The Tampa Theatre – The Princess Bride

April 10, 2013 at 8:10 am

{Disclosure: My family was invited to come to the Tampa Theatre for a tour and showing of The Princess Bride for free. All opinions are my own.}

A few months ago Jill Witecki, the marketing director for the Tampa Theatre, asked my Tampa Bay Bloggers group for our suggestions for “family favorite” movies.

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A new Sunday matinee series was in the works for the Tampa Theatre and it launched last weekend!

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I don’t know how much weight our suggestions were given, but I know that one of my suggestions made the list…The Princess Bride!

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Check out the line up for the next six Sundays:

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Our family was invited to come tour the historic theater and watch The Princess Bride. Somehow I had never been to the Tampa Theatre before, and The Princess Bride is one of my all-time favorites, so I was happy to accept the invitation!

The Tampa Theatre was built in 1926 as one of America’s most elaborate “movie palaces”. It was a place where for ten cents the common person could escape into a fantasy land of opulence for two hours, see first class entertainment, and be treated like royalty by uniformed platoons of ushers and attendants.

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In the early 1970’s the theater faced possible demise, but the efforts of the community and some generous patrons saved it.

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It is now on the National Register of Historic Places, is managed by the not-for-profit Tampa Theatre Foundation, and is a true piece of history.

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The tour was very interesting.

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State of the art technology:

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The men’s smoking lounge (smoking was permitted in the theater until the 1980’s):

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Even the restrooms were cool.

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The boys chose our seats and decided we should sit in the balcony.

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We were treated to some pre-show entertainment by the Tampa Theatre Mighty Wurlitzer which rose out of a hole in the stage.

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The organist was fantastic, playing many favorite “sing-along” songs including some Randy Newman who we love so much.

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Then it was time for The Princess Bride! It was just as awesome as I remembered and it was so cool to see it on the big screen again. The boys were mesmerized and I was glad they got to see it for the first time in this setting. We are huge Mandy Patinkin fans and after watching his broad career over the TWENTY-FIVE years since The Princess Bride, it was great to see him in his earlier years again. We loved him in Dead Like Me and are obsessed with Homeland. Chad is a big fan of his music also.

We had a great time at the Tampa Theatre and I know you will also! They do 90 minute tours of the theater twice a month and shorter tours before shows. Be sure to check out some of the rest of the movies coming up in the Family Favorites series.

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Cya!