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Bishop Visitor's Center

Intro

Now

The historic Bishop Twin Movie Theater, as it stands today, has been an entertainment venue for Bishop and Eastern Sierra audiences for almost 100 years. On the outside it appears to be little changed from its beginnings in 1925, but the two theaters have state-of-the-art digital screenings, up-to-date sound systems and comfortable seats with plenty of leg room.

The theater shows first run movies daily with two show times each evening, Monday to Friday, a matinee and two evening shows run on Saturdays, and Sunday showings are a matinee and evening show. Two new movies are screened each week starting Fridays with the occasional big blockbuster running an extra week or two.

Bishop Twin Theater at left just beyond Joseph’s Market.

Then

Movie magic in Bishop started in the early 1900s after Harry Holland passed through Bishop as an entertainer with a travelling Chautauqua show. He liked Bishop so much that he quit the show and returned to Bishop where he opened the Bishop Gem Theater in the building that is now Rusty’s Saloon. He used hand cranked projectors and thrilled audiences with the latest films. One film in particular became a favorite for a scene of a train rushing head-on toward the audience. Moviegoers would scream, and Harry would back-crank the projector and run it at them again.

What Makes It Great

Now

This is one of those wonderful movie experiences where you can decide on the spur of the moment to go see a show. Residents and guests in town can stroll or cycle the few blocks from nearby residences and lodging facilities with ease and in complete safety. Late summer’s evenings can be cool and dusky, and a winter’s night is usually sparkling and invigorating. The drive to town from outlying neighborhoods, lodgings, and campgrounds takes just a few minutes and parking is quick and free, just around the corner from the theater. Ticket prices are inexpensive, and the concessions sells freshly popped, hot buttered popcorn, candy, sodas, and other typical movie treats – at yesteryear’s prices.

Then

In 1918 Harry Holland bought the old Opera House in Bishop, where the Masonic Hall is located today at 156 East Line St. In addition to the movies Harry screened there, he hosted all sorts of entertainment from dances to musicals, theatrical presentations, banquets and even basketball games. Kids sat on benches near the front for stage shows and adults were seated further back on folding chairs. The balcony held the projection booth and box seats along the side were sold at a premium. The three-story building also had large meeting rooms on the upper floor, offices on the second floor with the theater and ballroom space taking up the first floor. The entire building was made of wood and in 1924 it went up in a blaze of fire so hot that it melted the windows of Harry’s new concrete house next door. The flames also consumed a few nearby businesses, but fortunately no casualties were sustained.

Soon after the Opera House burned down, Harry and his wife, Belle, found their new movie theater location on Main Street, right where it is now. Movie magic in Bishop was only interrupted for a short time. They began again with one screen and soon expanded the venue to house two screens. The Bishop Twin Theater has been in business ever since.

Harry Holland was especially fond of children. He never turned a child away for lack of funds, and during the depression he often let folks in free of charge. Halloween was a special time at Holland’s theater and Halloween shows were screened for free for kids. The marque sign would invite the “youngsters” with “no room for oldsters”.

Who Is Going to Love It

Now

There are seldom long lines for tickets or concessions, making a movie night in Bishop a happy, stress-free family fun outing. It’s casual and friendly and a night at the movies for two adults and two kids, with a few treats, might cost just a little over $40. Now that’s a good old-fashioned deal.

Then

At the time the Opera House burned down, a projectionist by the name of Jack Foley was employed by Harry Holland. Jack Foley is the Foley in Foley artist. Movie buffs may be familiar with the many Foley arts; Foley sheets, Foley footsteps, Foley reels, Foley walker, Foley editor and Foley studio. “Foley is the audio recording of a synchronous performance of an action or effect seen on screen by a Foley artist.” It is art of sound effects for motion pictures.

Jack Foley was born and raised in New York and attended Public School No. 158 at Coney Island. One of his classmates was James Cagney and he met Cary Grant who was a stilt walker at Coney Island. Jack moved to California in search of better weather and was soon working in the movie industry as a stunt double. Soon he discovered Bishop and the Eastern Sierra and so began a lifelong love affair with the Owens Valley. He moved to Bishop and raised his family here.

Read the full story here.

Jack worked in a local hardware store and at the Opera House theater. He was also a columnist for the Inyo Register and a regular contributor to Universal International Studio Club News. He maintained his movie studio contacts and it was his ingenuity that brought natural sound to films at the very beginning of the “talking movies”. It is a trade that continues to this day.

Best Season

Now

It’s always a good time to go to the movies. Escape from the summer heat or warm up on a frosty winter evening. Sometimes you just a need a comfy, dark space to relax and be entertained. One that thing hasn’t changed in all the years of movie going is … it’s a great place be with someone special.

Start or end your evening with a meal or treat at one of the many downtown restaurants and bars. Many establishments offer outdoor seating, which is deliciously comfortable on a warm summer night. Some have light and bright interiors and others are dark and romantic. There’s a world of good food available in Bishop to complement your movie night any time of year.

Then

Jack Foley was one of the first people to recognize the potential of the Eastern Sierra as a filming location and, with the support of Bishop’s shop owners, he created a publicity campaign to entice Hollywood film makers to Bishop and the Eastern Sierra. He became a location scout and brought numerous productions to film in the Owens Valley. The region continues to be a favorite and convenient location for Hollywood movie makers.

When films were being shot in Bishop, the crews would stay in downtown lodgings for the duration of the shoot. The footage from each day would be sent down to Los Angeles for processing and returned the next morning for review. Each afternoon the stars and crew would watch the rushes from the previous day in the Bishop Theater and then go out on the town for dinner and drinks in the local eateries.

Check the list of movies made in the Eastern Sierra here – courtesy of the Museum of Western Film History in Lone Pine.

Directions. Parking. Regulations.

The Bishop Twin Theater is located at 237 N. Main St. in downtown Bishop. Convenient and free parking is located just off Main St. on Church St and an adjacent lot.

Ticket prices are:

Children (Ages: 3-12yrs) $5
Adults (Ages: 13-64yrs) $8
Seniors (Ages: 65+) $5
Early Bird Matinee Show (all seats) $5

For more information call: (760) 873-3576

Find out what’s currently showing at Sierra Wave Online.

Coronavirus Special Message

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2 days ago

This is Bishop from the Tungsten Hills looking east. Our little town is almost like an island. We have to travel hours to do most major shopping, or for any major medical issues. For most of us, it is absolutely worth it because we love the Eastern Sierra and although our town is small, our “backyard” is big and full of majestic natural beauty. We know many of you who live far away love this place as well. ❤️

So as you are making holiday plans this year, please remember to protect the people and places you love to play in. We appreciate it!!

Photo by Betsy Forsyth Johnson
#keepbishopsafe
... See MoreSee Less

This is Bishop from the Tungsten Hills looking east. Our little town is almost like an island. We have to travel hours to do most major shopping, or for any major medical issues. For most of us, it is absolutely worth it because we love the Eastern Sierra and although our town is small, our “backyard” is big and full of majestic natural beauty. We know many of you who live far away love this place as well. ❤️

So as you are making holiday plans this year, please remember to protect the people and places you love to play in. We appreciate it!! 

Photo by Betsy Forsyth Johnson
#keepbishopsafe

Comment on Facebook

We were campground hosts at Mammoth & went to Bishop for nice dinners on our days off, get haircuts, do laundry & see dentist. Enjoyed Bishop Mule Days too.. Besutiful area to spend the summer... Had to edit & add Schat's Bakery 💞💞

My first trip to Bishop was 57 years ago and have been back more years than not. I plan to keep coming back until my legs can’t walk the trails anymore. It’s truly a special place.

Wish I could be there. Great place to do star watching. Seem to be extra stars in the sky over there. Wishing you all the best for the holidays. Wish that bakery could deliver. So yummy. Stay well. <3

Loved growing up in Bishop, many fond memories there! I bet the town has changed since 75, but never the scenery!

One of my favorite places to camp don't how many times I've been there but I've been a bunch of times love it over 30times

I love it too! Grew up in Big Pine, worked in Bishop and Big Pine! 😊

best town I ever lived in

A place and time far far away! A place named Bishop, where I was born.

Take care! Hope to see you again next year!

Lived in early 50’s I lived in a mine camp Sheelite till the mud slide, moved to Rovanna To a mine housing . Parents bought a house in Tungsten City, up behind Rocking K Ranch, attended school in Round Valley Lots of memory In the area

Maybe you need to stop Blaming people that travel to the Eastern Sierra for your local problems. Its not really that small of a town and With the tax you get from tourism build a real medical facility and hospital!

My Dad grew up in Bishop, he actually worked at the Tungsten mines for awhile before heading to El Paso to go to college. Then the war started and he joined the Army Air Corps . I spent many a summers staying with my grandma Duffy, playing with my cousins in that magical place. Still my favorite place on earth.

Best place to grow up ‼️

Bishop is always one of our stopping points if we're visiting Yosemite and Death Valley. Bishop Creek Canyon, Rock Creek Canyon, Schats Bakery, Jacks, Spellbinder Books, Whiskey Creek- all previous haunts. Once normal travel arrangements return, we'll be back to visit one of our favourite places in the USA.

I know this viewpoint........magic.

I really miss Bishop and the Owens valley.....

Lived at Hilltop Estates/ Swall Meadows for quite a few years in the late 70’s to the early 80’s. Only place in California that keeps me coming back every couple years.

We would love to move there! Love the area.

Thank you for the words and picture you are blessed to live there xo

Our favorite place to go. Always come to the car show.

Home🇺🇸

To bad its in commiefornia. Love bishop

I remember Lone Pine too. Loved it

Small Town, Big Back Yard. 🥰

One of my favorite places on earth

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5 days ago

Flashback to Main Street, 1886. Who would like to escape to this scene?

#LoveBishop #historicbishop
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Flashback to Main Street, 1886. Who would like to escape to this scene?

#LoveBishop #historicbishop

Comment on Facebook

I will take 1986. Had a cool uncle living there. Free lodging, and his Land Cruiser was available for deep snow drives.

Heck no...especially after I saw the video on "the old western hygiene". Talk about funk and stink! Whew, even the women stunk! Man-o-man....plus add on disease, diet and doctoring! Nope...lol 😆

I wonder if they still had to pose to get the exposure by 1886. Probably not.

Hmmm...1886 in Owens Valley? Was there a Sheriff? Or just a bunch of gun toting fools on horseback.

might be a sale but I will think it is a Halter class in the middle of the street and that will make me happy

Love that picture

I would love it. 🙏❤️🙏

I see Rusty’s!! Lol

It would be hard an cold but very free it would be something to go back in time

Every horse looks so healthy (extra shiny coat).... all that great pasture of the area > Owens Valley!

No thank you. I love Bishop, but I can't imagine living there without AC or a swamp cooler. lol

Even tho these days were hard ,they were free to enjoy great days.

Life was harder back then but better in My opinion.

Looks like a stock sale. If it were today, I would call it a horse show.

A busy place!

Early "Mule Days"?

I would buy that Appaloosa .

I would escape in a second :)

great pic

Right on

Can we visit but not stay?

Me

Great picture

Me toooooooo

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7 days ago

Ahhhh, we sure love sunsets in the Eastern Sierra!! 😍

Photo by John Paul DeRousseau
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Ahhhh, we sure love sunsets in the Eastern Sierra!! 😍

Photo by John Paul DeRousseau

Comment on Facebook

An amazing picture of a beautiful sky. Thanks for sharing 🙂🙂❤❤

The dinosaurs are still around when you see the sky like that

Hermoso,Bishop calf.

Awesome

Felicidades yerandi que tela pases muy vien

The ponds. Nice

I'm ready to FISH

Wow

Fantastic!

That's the sky color of snow on the way!! Lovely😍😘🐈😷

That is amazing beautiful blue sky I like winn you took that picture of the amazing beautiful blue sky

Amazing picture to put up on a wall

Gorgeous photo!

Wonderful!

So beautiful!

Beautiful

Beautiful

Beautiful!!

Beautiful

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1 week ago

Just an FYI. Seems fire season is still not over.
MONO COUNTY —U.S. Highway 395 in Mono County Due remains closed from Emigrant Street in Bridgeport to the Nevada State Line due to a wildfire in Walker Canyon. The fire has reached 20,800 plus acres and claimed 80 structures. It is unclear how long this section of the highway will be closed.

Drivers heading northbound on U.S. Hwy 395 should detour to either U.S. Hwy 6 just north of Bishop to NV360 to US 95 or State Route 182 in Bridgeport to Nevada 338. Southbound traffic from Nevada should detour to U.S. Hwy 95 to NV360 to U.S. Hwy 6 or Nevada 208 to Nevada 338 to State Route 182.
roads.dot.ca.gov/

This photo is from 9/11/2020 near Bishop... if you weren't here, the smoke was HORRIBLE!
... See MoreSee Less

Just an FYI. Seems fire season is still not over. 
MONO COUNTY —U.S. Highway 395 in Mono County Due remains closed from Emigrant Street in Bridgeport to the Nevada State Line due to a wildfire in Walker Canyon. The fire has reached 20,800 plus acres and claimed 80 structures. It is unclear how long this section of the highway will be closed.

Drivers heading northbound on U.S. Hwy 395 should detour to either U.S. Hwy 6 just north of Bishop to NV360 to US 95 or State Route 182 in Bridgeport to Nevada 338. Southbound traffic from Nevada should detour to U.S. Hwy 95 to NV360 to U.S. Hwy 6 or Nevada 208 to Nevada 338 to State Route 182.
https://roads.dot.ca.gov/

This photo is from 9/11/2020 near Bishop... if you werent here, the smoke was HORRIBLE!

Comment on Facebook

Hoping for an end to this nightmare. Time for some real rain and snow. Be safe. <3

Blah blah anything from keeping people away ! Come on people clear road a little hazy try and drive back east ! Quit whining!

We used to always camp with my parents at Bridgeport or Topaz lake years ago.

Tanner Ernst

Oh no!

These fires are never ending! Be safe.

Y'all stay safe!

Wow!

🙏🏻

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1 week ago

How many of you love to take pictures when you visit Bishop and the surrounding areas? With large amounts of open space, stunning scenery and ample wildlife, it might be the perfect place to work on your composition and skills.

Make sure to ready this blog article about photography here in the Eastern Sierra:
www.bishopvisitor.com/4-fabulous-photography-features/

With COVID-19 on the rise, we ask you to please protect the places and communities where we play. Stay SAFE outside.
#loveBishop #keepbishopsafe

Photo by @leviaguilera_photography
... See MoreSee Less

How many of you love to take pictures when you visit Bishop and the surrounding areas? With large amounts of open space, stunning scenery and ample wildlife, it might be the perfect place to work on your composition and skills.

Make sure to ready this blog article about photography here in the Eastern Sierra: 
https://www.bishopvisitor.com/4-fabulous-photography-features/

With COVID-19 on the rise, we ask you to please protect the places and communities where we play. Stay SAFE outside. 
#loveBishop #keepbishopsafe 

Photo by @leviaguilera_photography

Comment on Facebook

Your Bishop is on my list of places I want to visit when all of this is over.

Love the contrast....... nice photo of wild nature!

Mule (deer) Capital of the World!😄

Where is this?great picture

Nice!

Awesome

Beautiful deer

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