Time: 2-6 hours, depending on number of features and distance to nearest drive-in
The first official drive-in movie theatre opened in Camden, New Jersey in 1933. They increased in number, size and scope until they hit their peak in 1958, when there were almost 5,000 drive-ins throughout the United States. Drive-ins started dwindling in the 60’s and 70’s, but with the advent of cable and the VCR in 1980’s, drive-ins were dropping like flies. Today the number of drive-ins hovers between 500 and 800 (differing sources tell me different things).
I remember going to my first drive-in in 1992 (I am able to verify this by looking up the year the Death Becomes Her, the movie we watched that faithful night, came out. and am not sure I ever went to one again, but it left quite an impression on me. It was magical to do something you usually reserve for inside out of doors. I loved it, but I forgot about drive-ins for a long time. I recently decided to look for open drive-ins nearby by and found that the Parkway Drive-In is just 30 minutes away. We went, champagne in cans and money for jalapeno cheddar poppers in tow, and watched Alice in Wonderland outside. Lovely.
Google your closest drive-in. Pack a snack and a blanket. Get there a little early and watch the sun go down and the kids play kickball before the movie begins. Trust me. It’s worth it.