Some places are just different — there’s a brightness to them, an energy, and they have the power to bring together people of all ages and all walks of life. They’re the lifeblood of our region, and over the year, we’ll be highlighting some of these special places across our service area. We’re calling them Hearts of the Hill Country — because when we’re there, we’re community.
When lifelong best friends Zach Hamilton and Lance Regier saw inside Bertram’s The Globe Theatre for the first time in 2008, there wasn’t a lot to be excited about. The place had been sealed up after its last movie showing nearly 30 years earlier. The roof was leaking, the interior was trashed and the building was on the verge of being condemned. But where others saw ruin, Hamilton and Regier saw charm.
“We talked to the owner and he asked, ‘Well, what do you want to do with it?'” Hamilton said. “We said we wanted to rebuild the theater. He then asked if we could run the original projector, and we said of course we can. He said, ‘All right, well then I’ll sell it to y’all.'”
The duo spent five years replacing the roof and restoring the art deco interior, including the walls, seating and original 1930s color scheme. From breaking doors open to scraping bubblegum off the floors, Hamilton and Regier put their “blood, sweat and tears” into renovating the venue, and in 2016, The Globe reopened to take back its place as the entertainment hub of the Bertram community.
The Globe now seats 250 moviegoers and features one monthly live music act and three to four classic movies a month on the big screen, mostly Westerns and ’80s classics. They even take the community back in time every February with their annual winter dance party.
“Our two biggest shows are the Bruce Robison & Kelly Willis Holiday Shindig on Dec. 1 and the Winter Dance Party in early February,” Hamilton said. “It’s a straight up sock hop with poodle skirts and all. If you walked in, you wouldn’t know the difference between now and the 1950s.”
Shows at The Globe cost just $5 per person, but the theater and its owners are selling its customers something so much more than a movie and popcorn — they are providing a taste of the good ol’ days.
“This is the spot where people come to meet, and that’s how it was back in the day, too,” Regier said. “People that have lived here all their life are excited that [the theater] is here again, and they want to share that with their kids and their grandkids. What we’re really selling is nostalgia, and people love that about The Globe.”