2005-05-20 / News

Movies Bring Islanders Together Monday Nights

By Jessica Delaney

For most people, sitting in a dark movie theater, immersed in the lives of imagined characters, is an exciting experience. For Monday Movie Night audiences at Mission Point Resort, the experience has sometimes been even more thrilling.

In 1979, during the filming of “Somewhere in Time” on Mackinac Island, the movie “Superman” was playing at Mission Point. In the middle of the presentation, the sound broke down. Normally, this would greatly disrupt the movie, but in this particular instance, Christopher Reeve, star of both “Somewhere in Time” and “Superman,” stood up and narrated the film until the sound was back on track.

There may not be any movie stars living on the Island this year, but according to Craig Starkweather, organizer of Monday Movie Nights, there will be plenty of stars on the big screen. In conjunction with Clark Theaters, Mission Point will be playing first-run movies in their theater on Mondays, starting June 6.

Monday night movies were started by Jack D. Loeks, owner of Loeks Theaters, who lived on Mackinac during the summers. Mr. Loeks would fly movies up from his Western Michigan theater chain for employees on the Island to watch.

His declining health interrupted the showings for several years, but Mr. Starkweather revived them several years ago and will continue the tradition again this year. Monday Movie Night, he said, is continued in memory of Mr. Loeks, and to the dedication he had to the Island and to its people. Though everybody is welcome, from summer employees to Islanders to tourists, it is meant especially for those who work on the Island.

“We do it for the workers, although now we do get a lot more guests than we used to,” he said. “We have people who vacation on the Island from California all the way to people who vacation from New Jersey, so our movies are really shown across the country.”

Movies are selected to have a broad appeal to all people on the Island. Nothing with a rating above a PG-13 will be shown so that children will be able to attend. Start time for the films is 9 p.m., so that many employees can attend.

Though Monday Movie Nights generally draws a good attendance, it is not a moneymaking venture, Mr. Starkweather said, but rather a service.

Tickets at the door are $6 for adults, $3 for children (12 and under). They are discounted $1 when purchased in advance at Mission Point Resort.

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