Vintage Vinyl has a storied history as one of St. Louis’ longest-running independent record stores, but did you know that this location at 6610 Delmar Boulevard was once a cinema?
The southeast corner of Delmar and Leland Avenue used to be the Varsity Theatre, a funky little spot that opened in 1935 and managed to survive all the way until 1988.
It was more like the Tivoli Theatre (6350 Delmar Boulevard, 314-727-7271) than any of the large multiplexes in town, though, and it attracted art kids and lovable weirdos when it started regular showings of the Rocky Horror Picture Show in 1976.
Back in those days, you could find the likes of Michael Stipe from R.E.M. hanging out outside dressed up in full Rocky gear. (Skip to 1:23 in the video below for proof.)
And now you can find Michael Stipe on the racks inside of this longtime neighborhood record store and tourist destination in the ever-evolving Delmar Loop.
St. Louis Then and Now is a recurring feature in the Riverfront Times that highlights the history, beauty and changes in St. Louis. If you have a tip or an interesting old photo to share please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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