Dinner theaters may have been at the peak of entertainment in the 1960s through the 1980's, but they haven't faded off the maps just yet. In some cities, they've continued to flourish and draw crowds from all around for their unique experience. Who wouldn't want to mix great food and great shows? Here are a few of our picks for America's cant-miss movie theaters.
The Barn Dinner Theater
Open since 1964, the Barn is America's oldest dinner theater! Situated in North Carolina, this theater focuses on Broadway shows, with a full buffet of Southern-style food prepared for excited guests. The food ranges from delicious okra, banana pudding desserts, and ham and Angus beef as the main course. Classic hits like Wizard of Oz can be seen throughout the season, as well as fun holiday shows like A Good Ole Fashion Redneck Christmas.
The Fireside Dinner Theater
This theater-in-the-round (the seats surround the stage) has been kickin' since 1978, and it's here to stay! Because of its popularity, this theater is constantly expanding, and the chef is no exception! With a world-class background, guests can be assured that dinner will be extraordinary. Mixing both traditional musicals and in-house band symphonies, there's always a good show to see at the Fireside.
Candlelight Pavilion Dinner Theater
Deep in the suburbs of Los Angeles lies a dinner theater extravagant enough to impress the highest of L.A.'s celebs. Due to their perfect location, all the shows featured are filled with top actors and performers, giving most of their features Tony award-winning status. Top it off with a tastefully elegant interior design paired with a remarkable three-course meal, and you have yourself a perfect night out in Hollywood.
Murray's Dinner Playhouse
Little Rock, Arkansas may not scream "Broadway" to the average passerby, but those who dig deeper into the city's culture will be pleasantly surprised to find Murray's. Splitting their shows between high-brow comedies and classic musicals, there's a little something for everyone here. Unique to the Murray is that every menu is different based on the show -- so if the play takes place in England, expect something along the lines of Yorkshire pudding and a hearty stout.
Chaffin's Barn Dinner Theater
Everyone knows Nashville is one of the best destinations for music, and Chaffin's is consistently rated one of the top attractions in the whole city -- so you know it's going to be good! Proud of their heritage, many shows mix a Southern spin on a regular classic, with shows such as "Yule, Y'all" for the holidays. The premium buffet menu changes with each season, but it will never disappoint.
Circa 21 Dinner Playhouse
Originally a Vaudeville and silent movie theater in the early 1920s, Circa 21 has stuck to its roots but added a twist in the Quad Cities. Holding auditions in New York and Los Angeles each season, this playhouse delivers only the best performers, musicians and dancers for its productions. Decorated to remain true to its roots, this theater will take you straight back to the Roaring Twenties, while you enjoy a show-themed gourmet meal.