Drive-in to Something New

Summer is in full swing, and you might be looking for something new to try. Why not take in a movie at a drive-in? The nostalgic summer-night entertainment venue has faced a tough road — at its peak in the 1950s there were more than 4,000 drive-in theaters in operation; today there are about 350. But owners have fought hard to keep them going, and they offer more than you’d expect.

Most drive-ins have converted to digital projection, so the quality of the picture is nearly as good as you get at a multiplex theater. The sound is broadcast through FM signals, enabling you to have control over the volume. Many drive-ins offer double-features, allowing you to see two first-run movies for the price of one. And the atmosphere is fun and relaxed.

Keep these tips in mind for your next trip to the drive-in:


  • Search the database at to find a drive-in near you.
  • Before you go, check the theater’s policies, such as whether pets or outside food and drink are allowed.
  • Bring lawn chairs, blankets, pillows, and a portable radio if you want to sit outside your car.
  • Arrive early to get a good spot.
  • When driving in the lot, use your parking lights instead of headlights and drive slowly.
  • Give the concession stand a try. Drive-ins depend on concession sales to stay in business.
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