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Sunset Theatre

Photo from the Dirk Reinauer collection
102 N Columbia
Connell WA 99326
(509) 234-7811

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Record #2486  
 Opened: September 4, 1952
Capacity: 372 seats
Architectural Style(s):
National Register:
Current Organ: none
 Also Known As: Aubert

Information for this tour was contributed by The Sunset Theatre.

Located in the small Eastern Washington town of Connell, the Aubert Theatre was built in 1952 by August Aubert. The name was changed to The Sunset Theatre early on because people had trouble pronouncing "Aubert" correctly, and the word "Sunset" could be made from "Aubert" by replacing only three letters on the marquee. In 1952, Connell had a population of only about 500 people. The theatre was designed for a seating capacity of 500, but during construction it was decided that 384 seats would be plenty. While there is still room for the extra seats, they were never added. The current seating capacity of The Sunset Theatre is 372.

In the early days of the theatre, before television had become widely popular, there were shows throughout the week, sometimes a different feature every night. The theatre featured the latest technology in picture and sound, including capabilities for 4-channel magnetic sound and 3-D shows. In 1993 a new four channel sound system was installed.

August Aubert sold the theatre in the 1970s and it went through a series of owners. A video store was added in the 1980s. The current owners, Dirk and Jeri Reinauer bought the theatre and video store in 1992. All the seats in the theatre are original, as is the popcorn machine, which still puts out a great batch of fresh popcorn for every show. Also still in good working condition are the two original projectors.

 Photos remain the property of the Member and may not be reproduced without the written consent of the Member.

September 2016 photos from the Dirk Reinauer collection.

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2000 photos from the Dirk Reinauer collection.

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Photos from The Sunset Theatre collection.

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Last featured 1/23/2005. Last edited 6/2/2007.

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