The Strand Theater was constructed and managed by Gioachino and Rosalia Sapienza in 1914. Gioachino and Rosalia were Italian immigrants seeking a new life and new opportunity in America and Zelienople. In 1939, The Strand underwent its first major renovation.
The Strand thrived as a social center for Zelienople and Harmony for decades, providing a destination for families to escape the drudgery and routine of rural life and to meet and enjoy a night’s entertainment. But The Strand began to struggle when multiplex cinemas began dotting the suburban landscape and went dark in the 1980’s.
The Strand Theater Initiative was created in 2001 as a non-profit corporation to save the venerable old theater from the wrecking ball, with the goal of reviving The Strand as a cultural, education and community outreach center. Through private and public financial support, The Initiative purchased The Strand in 2002.