Movies at Twilight – love the Drive-In Theatres
Movies at twilight
There was a time motorists could choose open air cinema.
They could “drive in” to a movie theater, and park next to one of the speaker stands that were lined up before a giant screen.
Where they parked depended on how early they arrived, among hundreds of cars. It also effected how far their walk to the concession stand.
Folks could socialize outside their cars. Kids could enjoy the playground by the screen. Until it was dark enough for the film to start.
Now it was time to take seats — cozy in the cars. It was time to take the speakers that were available on the parking spot stands and clip them to car windows, before leaning back to enjoy the flick.
The Drive-In movie heyday is gone. Yet Drive-In theaters aren’t bygone.
Drive-in theaters that do exist are strongholds from better days. They remain the same as in they keep a huge screen at front, and a concession stand to sate most movie-goers’ cravings.
They differ as they offer movie audio through car AM or FM radio. A few drive-in theaters offer the traditional speakers — in select parking spots — for nostalgia.
They differ because they offer modern day movie titles. That was this romantic’s first concern. Wouldn’t these stronghold movie theaters stick to the flicks that accompanied their heyday?
Perhaps that would offer an ideal situation, were these theaters not trying to keep up with the times.
Nowadays they run second-run, and sometimes first-run movies.
What they have to compete with other movie theaters is their giant screen, so unique to contemporary public cinema. They offer admission prices that put movie-plexes to shame.
And they offer an amenity that is nostalgia to some, a novelty to others — an open air cinema that relies on the evening twilight to begin the movie.
A few modern-day Drive-Ins
—–Shankweiler’s Drive-In theater on Route 309 in Orefield, PA, is the second Drive-In movie theater ever, and today is the oldest Drive-In theater yet running.
Admission is $5-adult; $5-kids 12 and under. Movie audio is provided by FM dial on the car radio.
——Bourbon Drive-In in Paris KY is family owned and operated since 1957.
Admission is $7-adult; $2-kids ages 8-9; free for kids 5 and under. Audio is provided via FM radio, yet some traditional speakers are available.
——Skyview Drive-In, Belleville IL opened in July 1949. According to DriveInTheater.com, this is the last Drive-In theatre along Route 66 that remains open today.
Admission is $10-adult; free for kids 12 and under — up to 2 kids per paying adult, additional kids per adult are allowed for $3-each. Audio is available via FM radio. Use your car radio or portable radio.
——Starlight Drive-In Theatre, Atlanta GA. $8/adult, $1/ kids 9 and under. Movie audio is broadcast through an FM Radio transmitter. Use the one in your car, or bring a battery-powered radio.