Ioka Theatre & Soda Fountain

★★★☆☆

About Ioka Theatre & Soda Fountain

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If you live in the Seacoast areas of NH and have never been to the IOKA, then you are missing out on your chance to experience movies the way they used to be. The IOKA has been doing movies since 1915. It has a huge main theater that includes a balcony and holds over 400 people. The old silver screen was pretty beat up and recently replaced with a new screen. The seats were upgraded last year, as well as all the sound. That said, dont expect a shopping mall experience at the IOKA. The lobby is pretty small but original, expect to stand in the street like you did as a kid. There is an old Manley popcorn maker from the 40's that makes fresh popcorn right in front of you.

The floors are wood, the ceilings are tin and very high. It seems like everyone here knows everyone. Parents let their kids run around talking to their friends, this is very much a neighborhood theater. If you are early and things look slow ask the manager to see the projection booth where you can see some authentic antiques, including the working carbon arc lighthouses and 70 year old Brenkert projectors.

Downstairs is another small theater in a room that has to be taken from a 1920's detective novel. I dont reccommend seeing 'big screen' movies in this room but it is nice for art and indie flicks because of its intimate atmosphere and table and chair seating.

The IOKA is also a working theater and often has comedy nights as well as concerts. It is a great sounding room to catch an act in. I caught the Dresden Dolls there at a packed show and was amazed at how the place sounded.

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★★★☆☆

If you live in the Seacoast areas of NH and have never been to the IOKA, then you are missing out on your chance to experience movies the way they used to be. The IOKA has been doing movies since 1915. It has a huge main theater that includes a balcony and holds over 400 people. The old silver screen was pretty beat up and recently replaced with a new screen. The seats were upgraded last year, as well as all the sound. That said, dont expect a shopping mall experience at the IOKA. The lobby is pretty small but original, expect to stand in the street like you did as a kid. There is an old Manley popcorn maker from the 40's that makes fresh popcorn right in front of you.

The floors are wood, the ceilings are tin and very high. It seems like everyone here knows everyone. Parents let their kids run around talking to their friends, this is very much a neighborhood theater. If you are early and things look slow ask the manager to see the projection booth where you can see some authentic antiques, including the working carbon arc lighthouses and 70 year old Brenkert projectors.

Downstairs is another small theater in a room that has to be taken from a 1920's detective novel. I dont reccommend seeing 'big screen' movies in this room but it is nice for art and indie flicks because of its intimate atmosphere and table and chair seating.

The IOKA is also a working theater and often has comedy nights as well as concerts. It is a great sounding room to catch an act in. I caught the Dresden Dolls there at a packed show and was amazed at how the place sounded.

Pros: An authentic old time movie experience in a great historic town, good prices

Cons: Not air conditioned, parking can be tough

 

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