Rialto Theatre: A Cinematic Yard Sale

The "informal" clear-the-storage sale will take place behind the vintage South Pasadena theater.

True story: There's no shortage of offbeat yard sales around the Golden State. Whole towns have staged citywide events centered on gently used goods (think Morro Bay) while classic inns, like the Hotel Figueroa in downtown LA, have sold off light fixtures, furniture, and more.

In short? Placing some no-longer-needed stuff on a curb, with a price tag affixed, is not just the province of individuals. In fact, drive by the alley behind the Rialto Theatre in South Pasadena on Sunday, Aug. 14 and you're bound to see numerous items set up for lookie-loo-ing and buying, too, from old-school chairs to concession supplies.

Yep, even a vintage cinema like the Rialto can host a yard sale. And yep, this is the notorious alley from 1992's "The Player," so you likely won't shop a more reel-ready location any time soon. And yep, we mean nope, those aren't chairs from the Rialto you'll be browsing, but rather seats from another venue (the Rialto has been storing them).

They're from the '40s and 1950s, so the seats have seen, or more accurately been sat upon, a few movies in their time.

Note that the sale, which is being overseen by the Friends of the Rialto, is described as "informal" and won't mirror the large-scale sell-offs seen at some SoCal hotels in recent years. Still, if you're looking for a piece from a projector room, or something else that's quintessentially "old-timey movie house," you could have a bit of luck.

The Rialto's architectural flourishes and famous marquee won't be up for sale, for there remains a passionate push to see it again open, one day, as a vibrant multi-use space.

The 1925, TLC-needing landmark was sold in 2015, and the owners "are looking for the right tenant to take on the lease," per the Friends of the Rialto.

The preservation-minded group is hoping to be that tenant, and is working toward raising money to complete "the required initial restoration work" and line up some other necessary ducks. A video posted in June 2016 details those goals, with a fundraising page in the mix.

There's a way to jump into fund-raising at the cinema itself, via the Caravan of Fantasy evening on Saturday, Aug. 27. The "unique live fundraiser" is in support of the place it is being staged, natch, and tickets start at twenty bucks.

Another charming and cinema-unique way the Friends of the Rialto raising money to give the theater a bright future? Putting people's names up on the marquee, for a donation. Find your name in lights or all the info on this particular perk here.

It's a special place for many, and one that'll mark its 100th before we know it. Might you own a slice of its history, or at least a seat it has housed for awhile? A yard sale awaits your perusing in lovely South Pasadena.

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