Local residents eager to watch a film on the big screen with the smell of popcorn lingering in the air will be able to do so once again this week.
After being shut down since early March due to concerns about the spread of COVID-19, the Nelco Cineplex, 600 Cinema Drive, in Greenville, is set to reopen Thursday.
Tiara Piggs, the new manager of the movie theater, said seating inside each theater will be limited to half capacity. Families will be allowed to sit together, but other moviegoers who enter the theater will be required to distance themselves from others.
“We are very excited to open back up,” Piggs said. “I am really looking forward to seeing our customers again. I have missed being able to talk to them about the movies.”
Piggs, who began working at the Nelco in 2011 as a cashier, is also looking forward to working again with her fellow Nelco Cineplex employees, she said. “We have seven people who work here, and none of them have been able to work since the pandemic began,” she said. “We are so happy to be opening again. Everyone loves the movies, and, as we all know, there isn’t a whole lot else to do in Greenville.”
The Nelco Cineplex is owned by the Missouri-based United Entertainment Corporation (UEC). UEC Theaters, which owns theaters in 11 states, began reopening its theaters in June, and slowly reopened more as states allowed.
Mike Ross, president and CEO of United Entertainment Corp., noted in a press release: “The safety of our employees and guests is our utmost concern and we believe that best practices developed over the last number of months as well as guidance from the CDC and NATO (National Association of Theatre Owners) helps ensure that.”
As of Tuesday, the Greenville Nelco Cineplex was still finalizing what movies they will begin showing; however, according to Piggs, the theater plans to show some classic movies, like “Jurassic Park,” as it waits for the movie industry to begin releasing new movies.
Matinee prices at the Nelco cost $7.50 and regular viewing costs are $8.75.