Wonderland Cinema expansion, 1971

The Wonderland Cinema, located along Lincoln Highway East, was growing in 1971. This photo shows construction of a new wing on the west side of the building which would expand the cinema to a two-screen operation.

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Excerpts and summaries of news stories from the former Intelligencer Journal, Lancaster New Era and Sunday News that focus on the events in the county’s past that are noteworthy, newsworthy or just strange.

The friendly rivalry between two Pennsylvania convenience store chains turned to all-out war in 1996, according to a front-page story in the New Era.

Lancaster-based Turkey Hill and Altoona-based Sheetz were the respective mainstays of Eastern and Western Pennsylvania, and there was always an unspoken agreement not to encroach on each other's turf.

At least, so said Turkey Hill vice president Ron Regar. But that longstanding agreement had changed, and Regar placed the blame for the "store wars" on Sheetz.

After decades of sharing information with one another as the chains grew in their respective ends of the state, in December 1994 Sheetz opened a store in Palmyra, its first in Turkey Hill territory. Then, another in Elysburg in August 1995. Then in 1996, Sheetz stores opened in Harrisburg and York.

The incursion into Turkey Hill territory caused the Lancaster-based chain to retaliate by planning several stores in Western Pennsylvania.

In June 1996, Sheetz had just started building its first store in Lancaster County, with several more planned. That construction project sparked Regar's remarks to the New Era.

Sheetz officials declined to address Regar's displeasure for the New Era article.

In the headlines:

Zodiac killer suspect undone by handwriting

ValuJet flew 34 times despite problems on planes, FAA says

Lewis' long-jump leap lands him on Olympic team for fifth time

Check out the June 20, 1996, Lancaster New Era here.

In 1971, the concept of multi-screen movie theaters was spreading throughout the country, and many longstanding single-screen theaters were renovating and expanding to accommodate the latest trend.

That was the case at the Wonderland Cinema, located along Lincoln Highway East next to Dutch Wonderland.

The new addition, which expanded the original rectangular building into an L-shaped structure, would seat an additional 520 people. The original theater had seating for 734.

The theater, along with the neighboring National Wax Museum of Lancaster, was owned by Dutch Wonderland and leased to Claude Theaters of Doylestown.

In the headlines:

Judge muzzles Times' war report publication

Japanese self control room lets workers vent irritations

Year-round school idea studied

Check out the June 20, 1971, Sunday News here.

When heavyweight champion Joe Louis squared off against Billy Conn in 1946, it wasn't just the boxing world that took interest - the event was "the most talked-of sports event in history," according to the Intelligencer Journal.

And a group of nearly 200 Lancastrians "looked into the future" and watched the fight via the new-fangled technology known as television.

The group, which included leaders of business, industry and government, had been invited by the RCA corporation to the Towers Hotel in Reading, where "a number of television receivers of various shapes and sizes" brought them the fight in real time. RCA had been instrumental in developing television technology in the 1930s, but World War II caused the firm to focus its efforts on military applications. 

Thus, in 1946, television sets (and television broadcasts) were still quite rare. Some of the guests at the Towers Hotel for the Louis-Conn fight were seeing television for the first time. 

The location of the event, at the hotel situated atop Mount Penn, was chosen for the relative ease with which it could pick up the signal broadcast.

The fight itself was of such great interest because, much like the development of television, it had been delayed by the war.

Louis and Conn first met in 1941, with Louis winning the legendary 13-round battle. A rematch was set for the next year, but America's entry into the war caused a four-year postponement.

Louis won the fight, eventually going on to defend his championship title for a record 25 times.

In the headlines:

Russia offers atomic control plan

Hoover pictures aid from Latin America aiding food crisis

Teenage draft foes plan fight

Check out the June 20, 1946, Intelligencer Journal here.

A brief item on the front page of the June 20, 1921, Lancaster Intelligencer told of a local boy whose musical talents were about to take him places.

Hugo Kroeck, 18, had just graduated from Lancaster High School and his talent on the saxophone landed him a spot with John Philip Sousa's touring band.

The master of the marching band had contracted young Kroeck for a 40-week tour. 

The young musician had previously played in his high school band, as well as the local Burger's Military Band.

In the headlines:

Greece is asked to halt drive against Turks

10,000 Penna. Co. miners on strike

Check out the June 20, 1921, Lancaster Intelligencer here.

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