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By Lauren Zaepfel
Capitol Theatre in Niagara Falls welcomed scores of moviegoers last weekend, with approximately 345 people turning out to see Marvel Studios’ “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.”
“As far as our first big weekend went, we are happy with the attendance. Everything went very smoothly,” said Jordan Clement, division manager at Dipson Theatres Inc., the company that took over the former Regal Cinemas theater earlier this month. “I have received a lot of positive response, and many people were impressed with the cleanliness, the way that things looked and the prices for everything.”
Capitol Theatre General Manager Peter Lambert said, “So far, I have liked to see the people who were regulars coming here and saying they are so glad we are open. People were afraid they were going to have to drive all the way to the (Regal Walden) Galleria to see a movie in theaters.”
Since opening Capitol Theatre, Dipson has implemented new changes, including lowering ticket prices “drastically,” Clement said.
“We believe that going to the movies should be affordable and fun,” he said. “We want to meet people half way and allow them to experience movies on the big screen.”
General adult tickets cost $7 before 5 p.m., and $9 after 5 p.m. The ticket cost for students, seniors, veterans and children is $7. The theater will also offer a $7 ticket price for select studio films.
Capitol Theatre also offers “Bargain Tuesdays,” which includes a 50% discount on all popcorn and fountain drinks every Tuesday.
More updates include new menu screens, along with additional food options – including pizza logs, funnel cake fries, boneless wings, French fries, brownies and mozzarella sticks.
Moviegoers pick up snacks during “Bargain Tuesday” at the new Capitol Theatre in Niagara Falls. From left are Rockee, Nissee and Bowee Poodry, and River Hallett of Akron.
Capitol Theatre General Manager Peter Lambert prepares to serve customers.
Clement said increasing accessibility for patrons and expanding the company’s presence throughout the local region were main reasons Dipson decided to purchase the theater.
Besides Capitol Theatre, Dipson currently has locations throughout Western New York, including in Amherst, Lancaster, Buffalo and the Transit Drive-In Theatre in Lockport.
Looking to the future, Clement said long-term updates for Capitol Theatre include interior renovations.
“We are exploring plans for the lobby, and I know upgrading the current seating to luxury reclining seats – possibly heated seats – is also being discussed,” he said.
Plans also call for the Capitol Theatre to offer alternative and local programming, including work by local filmmakers and additional content that relates directly to the Western New York community.
Overall, both Clement and Lambert said customer service is a top priority at Dipson.
“We are a hometown company. We want to give people that sense when they come in the building. … We want people to come in here and feel something unique,” Lambert said.
Clement said the theater has a “great release schedule” of upcoming movies throughout this year, including Walt Disney Studios’ “The Little Mermaid,” Marvel Studios’ “Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 3” and Paramount Pictures’ “Transformers: Rise of the Beasts.”
“We think (the lineup for) 2023 looks great, and 2024 looks even better,” Clement said.
Show times for Capitol Theatre can be viewed online at www.dipsontheatres.com. Tickets can be purchased at the theater, and will soon be available to purchase online, as well.
Jordan Clement, division manager for Dipson Theatres, stands outside of the new Capitol Theatre in Niagara Falls.