Putnam Museum offers movie throwback series

Out-swim a killer shark, befriend an alien, and travel back in time. All without even leaving town. The Putnam Museum’s Theatre Throwback’s series features timeless films on a 70 foot IMAX screen.

Movies such as Jaws, E.T., and Back to the Future will be shown along with activities such as dancing, movie trivia, and themed food. The Putnam Museum strives to make each throwback movie a unique experience.

Ticket prices will be discounted to $7.50 for St. Ambrose University students who show their student I.D. at purchase. Normally the Putnam museum draws an older crowd, but the audience at Theatre Throwbacks is made up mostly students.

Katie Merritt, the events coordinator at the Putnam Museum, chose these movies because they’re entertaining as well as educational.

“These are the old school movies that I grew up on and my parents grew up on,” Merritt said.

Merritt says movies like E.T. and Back to the Future are made with quality that movies today lack. Audiences pull from these movies values and lessons such as friendship and history.

Choosing which movies to include in Theatre Throwbacks is a lengthy process.

“We’re trying to create an experience, not just a movie,” Merritt said.

First, the Putnam Museum needs to get the rights to show the movies. Next, the film committee takes suggestions until a large list is completed. Then, a vote is held among Putnam employees and the public through social media. Finally, Merritt decides what activities will be held with each movie and then marketing and promotion takes over.

“We try to ask via social media what titles people want to see,” Merritt said. The Putnam Museum advertises Theatre Throwbacks through Facebook, Twitter, Radio, and TV.

Merritt says the Putnam Museum provides a safe environment for students to spend time.

“Sometimes students need a night away from drinking and the bars,” Merritt said. “We provide a fun alternative.”

Events are supervised by Per Mar security, the same company that provides security for St. Ambrose University.

Merritt predicts Saturday Night Fever will be the most popular film this year. Last year both showings of Footloose sold out. The Quad City Social Dancing Group came and preformed while a D.J. played songs from the film.

This year’s schedule includes: Ghostbusters, February 7, The Sting, February 14 and February 17, Jaws, February 21, The Blues Brothers, February 28, E.T., March 7 and March 10, Saturday Night Fever, March 14, Back to the Future, March 21, The Godfather, March 28 and March 31.

Adult tickets are $8.50, senior, student, and military tickets are $7.50, and youth tickets are $6.50 each. Wine, beer, and frozen drinks will be available for purchase during the show as well as specialty candy for $1.00. Later shows have the biggest crowds so interested persons are encouraged to buy their tickets early. For more information visit http://www.putnam.org

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