Thursday, February 17, 2011

The Drive In Movie Theater

When I was growing up, the Drive In Movie Theater was a popular place in our area. We enjoyed the Saturday Matinee at the theater downtown, and On a cold winter night when we didn't have a ball game to go to but the excitement of the Drive In was a treat.

My first trips to the drive in were with my parents and family. Before the movie we kids would race to the play ground area complete with swings and jungle gym. The folks would visit with the people in the car adjacent to them and we would load up on popcorn. The speakers were on a post by the car and could be put in the car when the movie started. The Movie couldn't start until it was dark enought to see the pictures on the big screen and that was often late in the summer time.

I would later go with my friends and of course the Rancher. Our local Drive In had "Buck Night" on Tuesday nights. This meant a whole car load could get in for $1.
We could really cram the kids in my old 1953 ford. That was before seat belt laws and some would even climb into the trunk. I think some people even tried the trunk act to get in free. You could't fool the man who owned the theater though. He could see it all from his window in the upstairs projection room. He would just come and collect the money after the show started.

It was a relaxed way to go to the movies. Kids would run all around and the parents would put kids in one car while they sit in another and a lot of other things would go on that wouldn't in the local theater. That is probably another story.

I remember going to "Old Yeller" a Walt Disney movie, and watching my friends, who were teen age boys, cry. Of course, I cried too. Sometimes there would be a double feature. The first movie was the main attraction and the second would often be a science fiction thriller. I never did like thriller movies much less science fiction ones. There were even times when they had an all night movie. Who could stay awake all night? Not me but I am sure that some of my grandkids would have been able too.

I remember taking my own children to the Drive In before it was dismantled. They too would go and play on the playground. We would visit with friends and return to the car when the feature started. The kids would be asleep before the movie was over and the Rancher and I would snuggle like in the old days.

This past Summer when passing through a town in Colorado, we passed a Drive In Theater. I thought it would be a fun place to visit. The Rancher reminded me we were on a fishing trip and hadn't put movies on the agenda. That was okay though, it was pretty romantic sitting by the stream watching the moon rise over the mountains. What movie could beat that???


Paula said...

I loved playing on the swings before the movie. It was such a fun thing to do. We now have a drive in in the big town to our north, but we haven't been.

Dawn said...

I loved going to the drive in! Remember the dancing hot dogs?

Andi said...

My only memory of a drive in movie is Grease...And there were all sorts of stuff going on there in that movie! Strangely, I do NOT remember a play ground in that movie!

encomium said...

I feel like I've missed out! $1 dollar for a movie! and you don't have to worry about setting your purse on the floor because someone behind you might spill their drink and then it runs down through all the rows of chairs! However, I don't think it would take long for there to be popcorn stuffed in all of my car's seat cushions.

melva said...

I don't know where you went to the drive in for sure, but just wondering if I knew the guy looking through the upstairs projection booth window. This was wonderful!!

Marilyn said...

Melva, Yes I did but I didn't want to mention any names. He could have written a book on the things he saw.

Anonymous said...

I have fond memories of the drive-in at Laverne. I remember Ben Long came up with the name, Shamrock Drive-In. I also remember the buck nigh movie on Tuesday nights.