BATAVIA – The city’s two surviving mini movie theaters reopened Thursday with a new owner and a new name after more than 30 years in the Dipson chain.
The twin 400-seat theaters in the Genesee Country Mall, renamed Batavia Showtime, are now owned by Kenneth R. Mistler, downtown’s leading landlord with his restaurant, fitness center and several business buildings and apartments.
Dipson, named for the Greek immigrant who showed his first movie in the local New Family Theater in 1914, once owned three downtown movie houses, all razed by urban renewal. The mall theaters opened in 1980.
Michael Clement, who took over the operation after the death of William Dipson, son of founder Nikitas, said declining business prompted the sale of the property valued at $248,000.
The Dipson organization operates movie houses in Buffalo, Clarence, Lancaster and Hamburg.