A little bit of history. A drive-in theater is a form of cinema structure consisting of a large outdoor movie screen, a projection booth, a concession stand and a large parking area for automobiles. Within this enclosed area, customers can view movies from the privacy and comfort of their cars. when I was first introduced to the drive in experience in high school by a friend of mine we went with a bunch of friends to see the omen. It was awesome, before we got in the drive in we made some adjustment keep in mine that I was sixteen at the time by some adjustment I mean this we took two car (at the time gas was cheap .60 cents a gallon and he drove a big boat I think it was a Chrysler, the other dude drove a GTO 1966 damn I love that car, so we were 5 people by car 3 got in the trunk like I said we drove big cars back then and the trunk could fit 3 bodies comfortably so that is what we did. when we got to our parking space we open the trunk and got out this was the good old days back then. and no I do not remember the movie at all I was playing with some girl’s tits and sucking on her tongue. Later on I saw thew movie on cable. Also back in the day I knew some body who an apartment, his unit was in the back a little further down there was a drive in and yes when the movie started we could here the movie echoing we just seat have a beer and enjoy the movie that was the good old days. Now let’s continue on with the history of the drive in theater.
Originally, a movie’s sound was provided by speakers on the screen and later by an individual speaker hung from the window of each car, which would be attached by a wire. This system was superseded by the more economical and less damage-prone method of broadcasting the soundtrack at a low output power on AM or FM radio to be picked up by a car radio. This method also allows the soundtrack to be picked up in stereo by the audience on an often high fidelity stereo installed in the car instead of monaural through a simple speaker. The drive-in theater was the creation of Camden, New Jersey, chemical company magnate Richard M. Hollingshead, Jr., whose family owned and operated the R.M. Hollingshead Corporation chemical plant in Camden. he set a 1928 Kodak projector on the hood of his car and put a radio behind the screen, testing different sound levels with his car windows down and up. Blocks under vehicles in the driveway enabled him to determine the size and spacing of ramps so all automobiles could have a clear view of the screen. Following these experiments, he applied August 6, 1932, for a patent of his invention, and he was given U.S. Patent 1,909,537 on May 16, 1933. Hollingshead’s drive-in opened in New Jersey June 6, 1933, on Admiral Wilson Boulevard at the Airport Circle in Pennsauken, a short distance from Cooper River Park.
The first film shown was the Adolphe Menjou film Wife Beware. during 1938 and 1939 in California, Florida, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, Texas and Virginia. Early drive-in theaters had to deal with noise pollution issues. The original Hollingshead drive-in had speakers installed on the tower itself which caused a sound delay affecting patrons at the rear of the drive-in’s field. In 1935, the Pico Drive-in Theater attempted to solve this problem by having a row of speakers in front of the cars. In 1941, RCA introduced in-car speakers with individual volume controls which solved the noise pollution issue and provided satisfactory sound to drive-in patrons.
The drive-in’s peak popularity came in the late 1950s and early 1960s, particularly in rural areas, with some 4,000 drive-ins spreading across the United States.
In the 1950s, the greater privacy afforded to patrons gave drive-ins a reputation as immoral, and they were labeled “passion pits” in the media. During the 1970s, some drive-ins changed from family fare to exploitation films, as a way to offset declining patronage and revenue. Also, during the 1970s, some drive-ins began to show pornographic movies in less family-centered time slots to bring in extra income. This allowed censored materials to be viewed by a wide audience, some for whom viewing was illegal, and it was reliant upon the whims of local ordinances controlling such material. It also required a relatively remote location distant from populated areas such as towns and cities. Over time, the economics of real estate made the large property areas increasingly expensive for drive-ins to operate successfully. Land became far too valuable for businesses such as drive-ins, which in most cases were summer-only. Widespread adoption of daylight saving time subtracted an hour from outdoor evening viewing time. These changes and the advent of color televisions, VCRs and video rentals led to a sharp decline in the drive-in popularity. Drive-ins were subject to the whim of nature as inclement weather often caused cancellations. They eventually lapsed into a quasi-novelty status with the remaining handful catering to a generally nostalgic audience, though many drive-ins continue to successfully operate in some areas.
Many drive-in movie sites remain, repurposed as storage or flea markets sites, often after residential housing or other higher value uses came to the lightly populated or unpopulated areas where the drive-ins were located. The largest drive-in theater in the world, the Fort Lauderdale Swap Shop, doubles as the world’s largest daily flea market. Former drive-in properties in Michigan, for example, have become industrial parks, shopping centers, indoor theaters, and even churches (as with the Former Woodland Drive-In in Grand Rapids, MI).
The ongoing conversion of the film distribution network to be exclusively digital distribution is also putting additional pressure on drive-in theaters. Most small drive-ins lack the finances (estimated $150,000-200,000) needed to convert to digital theater. The lack of multiple screens with many daily showings means the low volume of ticket sales will make it hard for many drive-ins to justify the cost of installing digital projection. The year 2001 marked the inception of the “Do-It-Yourself” Drive-In, which utilized contemporary tools such as LCD projectors and micro-radio transmitters. The first was the Liberation Drive-In in Oakland, California, which sought to reclaim under-utilized urban spaces such as vacant parking lots in the downtown area. he following years have seen the rise of the “guerrilla drive-in” movement, in which groups of dedicated individuals orchestrate similar outdoor film and video screenings. Showings are often organized online, and participants meet at specified locations to watch films projected on bridge pillars or warehouses. The content featured at these screenings has frequently been independent or experimental films, cult movies, or otherwise alternative programming.
The best known guerilla drive-ins include the Santa Cruz Guerilla Drive-In in Santa Cruz, California, North Bay Mobile Drive-In in Novato, California, MobMov in San Francisco, California and Hollywood, and most recently Guerilla Drive-In Victoria in Victoria, British Columbia. Faced with the closure of Hull’s Drive In in Lexington, Virginia in 1999, the non-profit group Hull’s Angels formed to raise funds, buy the property and operate the theater as a non-profit venture specializing in family-friendly films. Hull’s continues to be the nation’s only non-profit drive in. As of 2012, a figure of 368 drive-ins has been published for the United States, though it is unclear how many of these are traditional versus non-traditional (e.g. guerilla).
Yes If you ever go to a drive in hit the concession stand and load up a tray full of food hold the coca cola because do it like I did back in the 70’s put a case of beer in the trunk and a cooler full of ice.
I remember those hot dogs fully loaded Ho! yeah! we use to call them sliders yes you guessed it you eat it and it slides right out of your butt. sometimes you would fart and burp like a son of a bitch. Haaaa!!! The good old days.
Drive in food oh! Yes I remember those days when you would get some greasy burger or hot dogs fries and a coke. I even remember those chili fries after eating them your stomach would go nuts than you rush to the bathroom. Damn! those were the days. The good old days. Of course if you had a cooler you would stake it with ice and beer and that was your brewage during the movies. I remember one time I used to know this guy when I went to high school he call me and we went to the drive in with a bunch of friends we were 5 in the car in his big old Chrysler that was In the late 70’s the thing is when we got to the drive in 2 of them went in the truck? the rest went around the theater there was part of the fence messed up we went under saw the car and got in which my buddy hand us a beer and the festivities were on the way. The movie was Omen, to tell you the truth I do not remember the movie too much because I was in the car next to us making out with a babe so when the movie came out on cable I finally saw it. Good times back then. On the top of that we drank a case of beer the 5 of us.
here are a few links you can surf.