The Purnell family would like to thank Harley Hay for his kind and moving words regarding the closing of the Park Plaza Theatre.
The Park Plaza was built in 1968 by Gordon Purnell and his family, known as Purnell and Sons. A
s Harley mentioned they owned and ran the 2-11 Drive-In, the 40th Ave Drive-In, the Paramount Theatre and the Park Plaza Theatre. Also two very early theatres to Red Deer, The Capitol and the Cresent Theatres which were located on Ross Street.
At one time they owned and operated 11 Theatres in Central Alberta, Cranbrook and the Crowsnest Pass.
The Purnell family took great pride in how their theatres looked, and were operated. A person’s moviegoing experience at a Purnell-run Theatre, was going out for a fancy night on the town.
The closing of the Park Plaza is truly the end of an era for Red Deer.