The public is invited to join members of Del Rio’s Silent Society of the Paranormal as they conduct a “ghost hunt” at the historic Paul Poag Theatre, 746 S Main St., in Del Rio, on Friday, Jan. 24, 2014 from 8:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. The site of the theatre has been in continuous use as an entertainment venue since at least the 1920s, which means there is nearly 100 years of history here. A number of strange events have occurred at this site, including a mysterious fire that destroyed the theatre in 1943.
The original structure at this site was a theater called “The Strand,” which served Del Rio in the 1920s and 1930s. In 1941, the Strand was torn down, re-built, and renamed the “Rita Theatre.” The Rita opened on December 12, 1941.
On February 26, 1943, the Rita was destroyed by a mysterious fire that reportedly started in a storage room.
The Rita, which was renovated several times, remained in operation as a movie theater until 1981 when it was donated to the city by John and Evelyn Prude and became a community auditorium. The city has done further renovations and it continues to be used today.
The theater is rumored to have experienced a number of paranormal occurrences over its many years of existence. Below is a video showing the Silent Society of the Paranormal in action: