United Capitol (Hays) Theater

411 West Saint Germain Street
St. Cloud, MN 56304

(Started as the Starland Theater. Later known by several names as the Neimec, the Hays, the United/Capitol (when organ was installed), People's Theater and finally Grand Theater.)
Builder: Morton Co., Robert, 1922.
Manuals: 2
Ranks: Unknown
Action: Electro-pneumatic

Notes: Opened on December 8, 1913 as the Starland Theatre.

By February 1916, it had been renamed Neimec Theatre, and was screening D.W. Griffith’s “Birth of a Nation”. Later renamed United Capitol Theatre and then People’s Theatre.

By 1926 it had been renamed Grand Theatre and was operated by the Finkelstein & Ruben chain. They were taken over by Publix and eventually merged with Paramount Pictures Inc. and was operated through their subsidiary John Friedl.

On July 3, 1945 it was renamed Hays Theatre, with seating given at 820. The theatre was operating under the Minnesota Amusement banner and during the 1960’s by ABC. Finally operated by Plitt Theatres until its closing.

It was demolished in 1977. A new library was built on the site where the theatre once stood.


Information from Encyclopedia of the American Theatre Organ, Vol. II by David L. Junchen. Pasadena: Showcase Publications, 1989.

Organ Historical Society as of 2020.