Wednesday, July 31, 2013

The Big Screen in a Field

Friday night was a lovely cool night so Rob came up and we went to Stephen's City, home of The Family Drive In Theatre. We sat in line on the grass verge and was glad we got there early, this place filled up fast. All following photos are iPhone taken at dusk so the quality is not good, but it gives a retro feel! 
America once had 4063 drive in theaters but less than 400 are remaining today. This theater is asking patrons to donate as they have to go to digital next month, costing about $140,000. They don't overcharge on tickets so make their profits from food sales.

We were happy to help, ordering burgers, soda, fries, cheese sticks and onion rings. Good God, how did we ever hope to eat it all! We didn't. But felt happy having done our bit and knowing we'd got a much better value than the regular cinemas.
The projector room!
The place filled up really fast and gradually folks settled down and quietened as the dusk grew darker and turned to night. And the lots of cool 50's style messages came up on the screen, which in daylight looked like a lot of vertical wooden planks painted white, but with a movie playing on top of it looked perfectly smooth.
 Not once during the movie did I think that the quality of the screening was poor or wish that I was in a regular cinema. The quality was great and even though we had our speaker clipped on to a rear window it sounded like surround sound. I really enjoyed being able to stretch out my legs and not have to share an arm rest with someone or have an elbow digging in to me. We watched from inside the car and was glad we did as it turned out to be a cool evening. Even with so many people around, including kids, our attention was never distracted by noise from others. There are 2 movies showing each evening, and 2 screens  yet we never heard anything from the other screen. Our first movie, Wolverine, had started late and when it finished at nearly 11pm, we decided to forgo the next one, not wanting to have a late night and be tired the next day. As we left I felt hopeful and wondered if this would now be a returning trend, and drive-ins would now rise up again. I sincerely hope so. Next one in Marshall please!

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