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May 28, 2013 > Charlie Chaplin headlines summer fun in Niles

Charlie Chaplin headlines summer fun in Niles

Submitted By Rena Kiehn

Niles once again welcomes the spirit of Charlie Chaplin to its downtown focusing on what he did best - making movies and making people laugh! The Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum resurrected the once-popular Charlie Chaplin Days a few years ago after re-opening the Edison Theater, a nickelodeon which first opened here in 1913. The non-profit organization expanded their once-annual film festival to weekly screenings at a bricks-and-mortar operation after restoring that building back to its original use. They have once-again teamed up with the Niles Main Street Association to offer film screenings of Mr. Chaplin and embrace his playfulness for the weekend in the business district.

There will be people dressed in period clothing, exhibits at the Fremont Art Association and even a few carnival games including a High Striker made by a museum docent. And there will be Charlie - you may see him "in person" depending on when you come but you will certainly see him in the store windows, on display around town, and in the atmosphere all around Niles. There will be a Look-alike Contest on Sunday afternoon. Please consider joining us - everyone who enters will win a prize and the top winner gets gift certificates to use in Niles stores! (We even have a few costumes available for you to "suit up").

To celebrate a double centennial this year, we are showing two films about movie-making in Niles in addition to Mr. Chaplin's cinematic treasures: When the Movies Came From Niles is a 1963 KPIX documentary made by local-film maker Ray Hubbard and The Movies Go West (1974) was made by the author of the legendary book The Golden Gate and the Silver Screen, Geoffrey Bell. It is narrated by Essanay actor and local resident Hal Angus who was there when the movies were made near the turn-of-the-last-century. At our regular Saturday Night at the Movies film screening with live piano accompaniment we will show Shoulder Arms, a comedy with unlikely subject matter: World War I. There are even steam and diesel powered train rides through the very canyon Charlie made some of his films - all aboard for information at . Look at the schedule for all the details and activities for each day and showtimes at

So come on down to our not-so-sleepy historic district in Fremont, CA and have a great time! Find out more goings-on just about every weekend in Niles by checking out

The Edison Theater - home of the Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum is open for docent-led tours on Saturdays / Sundays between 12:00 - 4:00 pm; Saturday Night at the Movies presentations and monthly talkie matinees of Laurel & Hardy and Our Gang on the second Sunday. You can sign up for Facebook posts; Twitter Tweets or the emailed E-Newsreels at our website . Our bimonthly Film & Events Schedule is available on-site or on many Niles storefront counters. We are always looking for a few good volunteers to help us input our acquisitions, dress in period clothing at special events, be a gift shop store clerk or a tour docent to enchant our audience and if all that sounds too hard, we would ever so appreciate someone willing to mop the vintage wooden floors. High School students can get community service credit toward graduation. We can provide costumes, training and you get perks like seeing our movie shows for free and being part of a hardworking-but-loving-it team bringing enthusiasm and commerce to Niles and Fremont. You can let us know of your interest / willingness at

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