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Going to the Movies
Going to the movies up here can be a very pleasant experience, particularly when you compare it to places like Boulder.
We went to the movies the other night at the Village Theater in Estes Park, [which no longer exists] and I don't own it or work for it or get free tickets, but you ought to know that going on a Tuesday before the tourist season can be a lot of fun.
First of all, it's dollar night, so we got to see a very good movie for only two bucks. Second, the place is clean, which is to say your feet don't stick to the floor. Patrons seem to appreciate that; I saw quite a few making a trip to the lobby to dispose of their trash. Third, the help is nice. A pregnant lady in front of me was having quite a time with her popcorn and such, so one of the kids at the candy counter helped carry her drinks to her seat for her. When was the last time you saw that happen? Fourth, the audience is just downright friendly. The gentleman in front of me had a big bucket of popcorn and he sat down and offered some to the young man next to him. Friends, you just aren't going to see that in a Boulder multiplex theater!
Finally, the audience is well behaved. And it wasn't just a crowd of white-haired folks, either. There were quite a few young people whose parents have done a good job. It was a long movie: almost two and a half hours, but the audience sat quietly, didn't try to narrate for it, or talk back to the actors or rewrite the dialogue. They didn't even rattle their candy wrappers. When was the last time you were in a really quiet movie theater?
Many of us older folks have fond memories of the old days when going to the movies was an experience that had a little class to it. We remember audiences who had some respect for each other and theaters that were clean and looked as though the owners cared about them.
I haven't had the courage to brave the summer crowds at the theatre, and I doubt they're as nice as the group we sat with the other night. So I guess you should count yourself fortunate if you can be here in the off season, go to dollar night, have a nice sit-down dinner at a place where you don't need a reservation and drive home by the light of the full Rocky Mountain moon, for under twenty bucks. That's something you're not going to be able to do in very many places.
But the real difference isn't the moon or the prices or the theater building. It's the people who make the difference: people who care about the place and each other
© 1985 – 2003, David E. Steiner
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