MT. VERNON — This season’s Classic Kids’ Matinee at the Granada continues Saturday with a showing of Steven Spielberg’s landmark 1982 family film, “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial.”
Organizers say they are hoping for a large turnout since “E.T.” is the kind of movie both parents and children can enjoy.
The Granada Center for the Performing Arts holds the Classic Kids’ Matinee once a month each year from October to May. Admission is free and concessions are offered for a modest fee.
“A lot of parents saw (’E.T.’) when it was first released and will like to come back to it,” said Barbara D’Arcy, president of the Granada’s Board of Directors. “For a lot of children, this is their first movie theater experience coming to the Granada.”
“E.T.” tells the story of a young
boy who befriends a kind alien that has been trapped on Earth.
Doors open for the showing at 1:30 p.m. Saturday, and the movie will start at 2 p.m. Children have to be accompanied by an adult.
Prior to the showing, a drawing will be held for a free kids’ birthday party at the Froggeez family fun center.
A total of eight films are shown each year for the matinee program. “E.T.” marks the halfway point of the 2013-2014 season as it is the fourth film to be shown.
Several local banks and St. Mary’s Good Samaritan Hospital are sponsoring this season’s films. Peoples National Bank is the sponsor of the “E.T.” showing.
Granada officials and sponsors had input on which films were selected for this season, D’Arcy said. The theater cannot screen first-run movies.
The films chosen for 2013-2014 include an eclectic mix of live action and animated movies designed to appeal to a wide audience, D’Arcy said.
“They’ve come up with some great ideas for this season and we are getting some good feedback,” D’Arcy said. “I think it’s been very successful.”
Local teacher Anne Brands has brought her 8-year-old daughter, Brylie, to the Classic Kids’ Matinee on several occasions.
She said her daughter greatly enjoys the vintage theater atmosphere at the Granada and always wants to take a picture inside the old-fashioned phone booth on display there.
Brands added that it’s great to have a source of inexpensive, family entertainment in Mt. Vernon.
“I think it’s fantastic,” Brands said. “It’s good for our town to have something that’s affordable and still fun for the kids. … We’re really excited about ‘E.T.’”
D’Arcy said the matinee can also be fun for parents and grandparents, many of whom like to reminisce about their experiences at the Granada.
At a recent class reunion held at the Granada, a woman said she had her first kiss at the theater many years ago, D’Arcy said.
“It’s really fun listening to the memories people share with you,” D’Arcy said. “I just think it’s wonderful we’ve been successful with our renovation efforts and we’ve been able to continue to offer family films for the community.”
After Saturday’s event, the Classic Kids’ Matinee will continue with showings of “Despicable Me 2” on Feb. 8, “Gnomeo & Juliet” on March 8, “The Love Bug” on April 12, and “The Odd Life of Timothy Green” on May 10.