The historic LaSalle Theater in Collinwood is once again a shining gem in the neighborhood. Built in 1927, it has recently been transformed into an event venue and community center that features an exhibit hall, a stage for local theater groups and arts programs and meeting space for businesses and community members. The transformed theater now provides a new venue for the community to host important events, from birthday parties to weddings, and everything in between.
The re-birth of this structure has created new opportunities as well. Apartments on the upper floor have been added – and leased! Additionally, retail locations have been incorporated into the building’s frontage and face the popular and heavily trafficked East 185th Street.
Michael Prokup is the manager of Humphrey Popcorn Company, which opened up its retail location in the theater late in 2018. “The fully restored LaSalle Theater provides an impressive first impression,” he states. He is glad to see the shop open and likes the potential for continued success on East 185th Street, noting “many businesses are operating in the area, and there is a healthy mix of shops that offers good opportunities to local consumers.”
Humphrey’s Popcorn is an iconic brand of days past in Collinwood. Its products are the same as those offered at the former Euclid Beach Amusement Park. Many popcorn products, Baker’s Chocolates (another Collinwood staple item), and other Ohio-made products are featured in the store.
“We chose Collinwood because of our history,” states Prokup. “This is the neighborhood where Humprey’s and Bakers made their mark.”
Humphrey’s is not the only local business to set up shop in the LaSalle. Michael Ballard operates 4 Corners Framing on the other side of the impressive LaSalle marquee. It is a custom picture frame shop that focuses on conservation and display of artwork and documents. The shop also provides restoration and repair services, mounting, matting, shadowboxing, and creative design for personal crafts. A small, curated gallery of artwork, including paintings from local artists, is on site.
“The LaSalle restoration was amazing and it had a clean fresh look that fit perfectly with my minimalist personality. I instantly fell in love with the space and didn’t even have to change anything cosmetically (to my shop). The updates are perfect,” says Ballard.
He sees strong potential for retail on East 185th Street. “I can see the street getting back to its former glory, with some basic effort and participation from the community. In just the past few months, I’ve already had many customers stop in just because they noticed a new shop on the street.”
“I chose Collinwood because it’s a neighborhood on the upswing, and a neighborhood I call home,” notes Ballard. “This community is on the brink of a major shift, and being involved in its reinvestment makes me proud.”
Cleveland.com and FreshWaterCleveland.com have also recently covered the momentum taking place at the LaSalle and on East 185th Street. To learn more about the space available at the LaSalle Theater, please visit www.lasallecle.com.