Known Years of Operation

Sep 23, 1911 - Oct 20, 1918

Number of Seats



Dan L. Sharits, A.C. Burgess, Al Sather, D.C. Burkhart, Edward O'Neil, K. L. Bernard, O. T. Bergner, Mrs. O. T. Bergner

The Star had a number of go-getter managers over its lifespan: Dan L. Sharits, who used his experience making local films to create a career for himself working in Hollywood; A.C. Burgess, who was "leased" from the People's Amusement Company; and Al Sather, who had previously managed the Star, the Tivoli, the Crystal, and the Ideal theaters in Portland. 

Al Sather was a singer who routinely booked himself as an act at the Medford Star.

Program at the Star theater, 1911
Medford Mail Tribune, Sept. 21, 1911. Historic Oregon Newspapers.

Dan Sharits made a film series titled “Made in Medford” which he showed in the Star theater. Subjects of the film varied, but the most popular one depicted Medford schoolchildren running and playing around town. His last film was a comedy/mystery titled The Stolen Pie and it cast some of Medford’s most notable residents. According to an interview with Medford native, Margaret LaPlante, this picture attracted 5,000 people. The Stolen Pie formula had success in Eugene and Klamath Falls, as well, where Sharits made the same film with local people in each different town.

The Stolen Pie at the Star, 1916
Medford Sun, June 18, 1916.
Star theater opening in Medford, 1911
An announcement for the remodel of the Medford Furniture Company into the Star theater. The remodel reportedly cost $5,000. Medford Mail Tribune, Aug. 17, 1911, p. 6. Historic Oregon Newspapers.

Admission prices ranged from 10 cents of a typical ticket to 25 cents for special programming or fundraiser events.

The Star also presented frequent fundraising nights to benefit local schools and other charitable causes.

Athletics fundraising benefit at the Star, 1913
Medford Mail Tribune, Nov. 17, 1913. Historic Oregon Newspapers.


Oliver Twist at the Star, 1912
Medford Mail Tribune, Sept. 13, 1912, p. 6. Historic Oregon Newspapers.


Corset fittings at the Star theater, 1915
Medford Mail Tribune, Oct. 20, 1915. Historic Oregon Newspapers.

The news item at right is an example of a crossover promotional strategy. The ad reads “The May Company Have Engaged the Star theater for a special matinee.” The picture show at the women-only matinee event was of a corset fitting, titled “How Marjorie Won a Career”. The ad predicted a spike in sales for theatre tickets and corsets sold in town by the May Company.

Interestingly, the Star theater took out this advertisement at left which told the Medford audience that they could see Oliver Twist at their theater for only ten cents, versus the two dollars charged at the Empire Theatre.

In fall of 1918 the Medford movie theaters closed for four weeks to slow the spread of the Spanish flu pandemic. The Star was re-opened on November 24 as the Liberty theater (1).

Theaters closed for flu pandemic, 1918
Medford Mail Tribune, Oct. 12, 1918, p. 1.


Works Cited

  • 1. "Local and Personal," Medford Sun, Nov. 17, 1918, p. 2.