About the Garden Theatre
Originally built in 1935 as a single-screen cinema, the Garden Theatre was the first in Central Florida built for "talkies," and was a gathering place for locals to watch the latest newsreels and films of the day. Constructed in the Mediterranean Revival style, the interior of the theatre was modeled after a Spanish courtyard with "Romeo & Juliet" balconies, Spanish tile roof, and a dark blue ceiling resplendent with "stars." The theatre underwent several renovations until closing in 1963. Soon after, the interior was completely removed and the sloped floor was covered with cement to level the surface to be used by a farm supply store.
Through the tireless efforts of the Winter Garden Heritage Foundation, the restored Garden Theatre reopened in February 2008, and with over 200 events per season, has quickly become a shining star on Plant Street. The Garden Theatre brings a cultural performing arts center to Winter Garden, a town with unparalleled charm in Central Florida. This achievement is revitalizing the downtown historic district, and bringing a nostalgic sense of community back to the citizens of Winter Garden.
By restoring its architectural charm and re-introducing well-loved family programming, this treasured gem has quickly become an economic driver for West Orange County. By presenting 4-7 events each week, a study by Americans for the Arts, Arts and Economic Prosperity Report, shows the estimated annual economic impact of the operational theatre to be over $1 million annually.
The Garden Theatre hosts live plays, concerts, movies, and more for residents and visitors of Winter Garden. The Garden Theatre is committed to enriching, engaging, and entertaining through creative experiences and strives to be a destination to ignite the creative soul.
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Recommended by 100% of couples
Danielle · Married on 06/21/2015
First and foremost, fellow brides, please be aware that the Garden Theatre and the Roper Garden Ballroom are operated by entirely different people.Sent on 06/26/2015
THE GARDEN THEATRE
My reviews above are for the excellent and friendly staff of the Garden Theatre, a non-profit historical movie theatre. Brian Fallon, the events manager, and the entire technical theatre staff made our wedding day perfect! They were cordial with our vendors, flexible with our schedule, and have a great passion for service and events. Our ceremony was held at the theatre and we got rave reviews from our guests.
ROPER GARDEN BALLROOM
On the other hand, the Roper Garden Ballroom was a less-than-ideal place for our reception. Their events manager, Matt, was very hard to get in touch with throughout our 6 month planning process. Three days before the wedding, the owners of the Roper Garden Building, a brother and sister team, emailed me about a technicality in our contract about our bartender and caterer and asked me to speak to them in person. The Ropers accused me of not reading my contract and of not planning ahead. When I would try to interject or show them one of my emails to Matt, they promptly cut me off, threatening to not let me have food or beverage in their venue. At one point, Becky Roper said, “ We can’t keep having these cheap brides rent our venue, they all try to cut corners to save money.” I cried. They wouldn’t hear any of my objections or concerns about communicating with Matt, they said that this was my responsibility, despite the fact that I had repeatedly asked Matt for clarification and vendor approval. I would never wish any bride the stress and humiliation of dealing with the Ropers or their venue. (On the day of our wedding, the venue’s air conditioning couldn’t chill the room, so our reception was at 80 degrees the whole time and no one danced. I may be a "cheap bride," but I’m fairly certain that A/C is common courtesy.) Book the Garden Theatre, but avoid the RGB!
User3238473 · 2+ years ago
Such a beautiful place for my wedding. Brian was very helpful. Couldn't ask for a better place for a hollywood glam wedding.Sent on 02/25/2014
Cara · Married on 09/21/2013
This was the best place I could have ever imaged having our wedding. I only had two request when finding a wedding venue, the wedding be indoors and the wedding and reception be in the same place. With the Roper Garden Ballroom upstairs it was an easy flow to get the guest from the wedding to the reception. Brian was such a big help and made it a magical experience. With use of the dressing room it was easy for me and my bridesmaids to get ready right on site. The stage was beautiful, though we did have a good back drop with the musical they were putting on. Plus with the historic downtown Winter Garden outside it made for a beautiful night. The Ballroom was great, nice and spacious. It also has balconies over looking the streets of downtown Winter Garden. I would recommend the Garden Theatre for anyone getting married, plus the Roper Garden Ballroom for the reception, they both fit together nicely.Sent on 10/03/2013