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Nephi getting first movie theaters in decades



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NEPHI-- There is at least one business doing well in this down economy: movie theaters. It seems people are getting away from their everyday concerns by escaping to the big screen.

Soon Nephi residents will be able to join in the fun a little closer to home with their first movie theater in at least two decades.

Resident Alexandrea Painter, said, "There's been a lot of people saying, is it really coming?"

It's coming all right, and Nephi residents can't wait.

"It's crazy to think for the first time, in a long time, it's going to be here," Painter said.

Even crazier is how far the economy has fallen since Steve Robison and his partners really got the movie theater project going.

"It's a little unsettling, but the statistics tell us movie theaters do improved business during recessionary periods," Robison said.

That helps them from wondering if they dug in too deep, too soon. But besides knowing movie theaters do well during tough times, they also know their theater is in a good location. Right now, residents have to drive nearly 45 minutes to Payson or Ephraim to see first run movies.

Robison said, "This should be a good source of entertainment for the locals."

Not only will the movie theater bring in some entertainment for the folks in Nephi and surrounding areas, it will also bring in a few jobs.

Abby Ivory is on the Nephi Chamber of Commerce. She said, "We have had our share of the job loss, so having something come in that will employ between 20-25 people, even though they might be high school students, it's still a wonderful asset for us."

It also means another tax base for Nephi and might even bring in more restaurants as people, since dinner and a movie make a good night out.

"We think it'll bring tons of people to the area, and hopefully they'll stay and spend their money," Ivory said.

As the saying goes, if you build it, they will come.

The movie theater will have 440 seats and three screens. It's expected to be finished by the middle of summer.

E-mail: acabrero@ksl.com

Alex Cabrero

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