By Jon Moffett
Nearly 100 young people were removed from the theater earlier this month for disruptive behavior.
BOARDMAN — Parents who wish to spend more time with their kids on the weekend may now get their chance.
The Cinemark Tinseltown theater at the Southern Park Mall complex, institutes a new policy today: Any child under the age of 17 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian to view a movie after 6 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays.
According to a news release issued by Cinemark USA Inc., the policy was put into place because of, “numerous customer requests for more supervision of exuberant, younger movie-goers, especially during the more crowded weekend evening time period.”
“I think it’s kind of ridiculous,” said Danamarie Donatelli, 21, of Canfield. “My sisters are under 17, but they’re really responsible.”
Donatelli said it was unfair to punish all children because of the actions of some.
“Some of these kids behave all week, they go to school, do their work and look forward to going to the movies on the weekend.”
Brooke Campana, 21, of Struthers, agreed. She said her 16-year-old brother doesn’t cause trouble but is still being punished.
“I think it’s a little extreme; I don’t agree with it,” she said. “It’s a little embarrassing for a 16-year-old who just got their license to have to show up at the movies with Mommy and Daddy.”
The policy was brought about by complaints of rowdy children at the cinema. An incident on Feb. 10 required police involvement. Two officers reported to the scene and found 80 to 100 children, who were removed for disruptive behavior, congregating outside the cinema.
A 13-year-old township girl was charged with assaulting officers, resisting arrest and disorderly conduct after police allege she kicked the two officers. Her 15-year-old sister was also charged with disorderly conduct after screaming at police.
Daniel Delisio, 16, of Boardman heard about the incident and the policy change. He said the change is somewhat unfair, but doesn’t really bother him because of the incident earlier this month and other fights at the cinema. He added the policy can complicate things for children who don’t act disorderly.
“If you’re going on a date or something, you’d have to take your mom,” he said.
Delisio’s older brother, Joe Lynd, 31, said he remembers going to the movies when he was a youth and feels the policy is a bit strict.
Others, however, remember being rowdy youths themselves.
Kitty Hacon, 48, of Austintown, said she is familiar with acting up while out with friends.
“I remember me at 16,” she said. “I was horrible.”
Though her only child, Ashley Timmermann, 22, is too old to be affected by the policy, Hacon said she wouldn’t feel inconvenienced by having to take a child to the movies on a weekend.
“I would never be inconvenienced by my child,” she said. Timmermann said the policy was unfair, but it is a good idea to monitor behavior inside and outside the cinema.
“I’ve been to a movie when kids have been talking or throwing things,” she said. “So I’ve had to say something to them. I’m pretty opinionated.”