BY GABE LICHT
DELANO, MN Delano area residents no longer need to stay home or drive to another community to watch a movie from a recliner or while eating pizza or drinking an adult beverage.
That experience is now available at Emagine Delano, located at 4423 Highway 12 in Delano.
Emagine purchased Delano Theatre, and seven other cinemas in the Mueller Family Theatre Chain, in 2016, with plans to renovate all of them.
Delano’s location was second on the list.
“Delano has great potential,” said Emagine Vice President of Operations Frank Ficalora. “It’s an underserved community in regards to cinema.”
He no longer believes that’s the case due to a number of changes, including seating upgrades.
“The seats there are very robust; they’re very comfortable,” Ficalora said. “There’s a lot of leg room. No one will be kicking the back of your seats.”
Patrons can also reserve those seats online at www.emagine-entertainment.com, from a number of third-party vendors, on the Emagine app, or at the box office.
“Your seats are already reserved for you, like going to a game at Target Field or a play or a concert,” Ficalora said. “You can come to the theater, enjoy a drink at the bar, order a pizza, and we’ll bring it to your seat if you’d like.”
The bar features a variety of adult beverages, including local beer.
Concessions now include a variety of items prepared in a stone oven. That includes cheese, pepperoni, and barbecue chicken pizzas; pretzel bites with cheese or mustard, and donuts. Hot dogs, nachos and cheese, and of, course popcorn are also available, in addition to about 20 candy options.
All those concession items can be washed down with a beverage from the Coke Freestyle machine, which offers about 110 options, compared to about six options previously. For those who like colder beverages, they can choose an ICEE.
Soon, patrons will be able to order popcorn, pop, and candy using the Atom Tickets app, with other pre-order options available in the future.
Speaking of tickets, they can be purchased for $5 each Tuesday, when rewards program members can also get free popcorn.
Every other day, matinee tickets are $7 for an adult rocker seat and $8 for an adult recliner, while rocker seats are $6 and recliners are $7 for children 11 and younger and seniors 55 and older.
For evening shows, adults pay $10 for rockers and $11 for recliners, while the kid and senior rates are $2 less for each.
Emagine Delano opened its doors June 1 for a grand opening, with about $1,000 in proceeds going to Helping Hands Food Shelf in Delano. Ficalora said he received positive feedback from those in attendance.
“I encountered quite a few people saying, ‘We really love what you’re bringing to the community,’” Ficalora said. “’We love the upgrades. We love the seats. It’s really cool you can get a drink . . . They like the fact they can get a pizza.’”
Ficalora invites anyone who missed the grand opening to stop by and check out the improvements.
“We urge people to come out if you want a tour,” Ficalora said. “We’d be happy to give a tour to anyone who comes in. Some people are driving by and curious about what it looks like inside. We’d love to show it off.”