Local Attractions » Historic Athens Theatre

838 E New York Ave, Deland, FL

Historic Athens Theatre
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The Athens Theatre is one of the few existing examples of a classic American theatre in Central Florida. Once the centerpiece of DeLand, the Athens Theatre is a jewel of Italian Renaissance architecture. This historic theatre was designed in 1921 by prominent Orlando architect Murray S. King. The opening night performance on January 6th, 1922 included a movie, live theatre performance and several vaudeville acts. On January 5th, 1922, the eve of the theater’s opening, the DeLand Daily News declared the Athens to be “Florida’s Handsomest Theatre” and “a gem of architecture”. Constructed primarily by DeLand craftsmen and laborers, the facility embodied the very best in design, construction, decoration and equipment. The theatre’s name was derived from the vision of DeLand’s founder, Henry DeLand, who sought to create a city that would be the “Athens of Florida”.

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