Sunday, July 17, 2011

Last night I went to the local drive-in theater to see the new (and last!) Harry Potter movie.  This one is Haar's Drive-in near Dillsburg, PA.  It was a perfect summer evening, low humidity, not too hot. Once it got dark and the movie started, I could see the stars all around.  That didn't last too long because the full moon soon rose in the cloudless sky and hid all but the brightest stars.

I think blockbuster movies are meant to be seen outdoors at a drive-in.  There aren't many around anymore.  They take up a lot of land.  This one has been around all my life.  At the back of the theater grounds is a building where the owners hold a weekly auction.  Back in the day, the building held a roller-skating rink. My parents met there not long after dad returned from World War II.  I've watched movies here since I came with my parents, sometimes wearing pajamas because it would be late until we got home.  As I got older, I joined the bigger kids running around the lot on the swings, an impromptu little tribe of sudden friends.  That was more than 50 years ago now.

I noticed that things haven't changed very much.  The drive-in was packed last night.  It usually is, especially on a night with fine weather and a big movie on the marquee.  The kids still run around, the parents sit outside before the movie and read or chat or play cards.  Trucks and bigger cars face backwards so people can put their lawn chairs in the back and watch the movie. Teenage girls come 3 or 4 to a car.  Couples--young, married and elderly--show up.  Families bring kids in pajamas, with flashlights.  

I saw the full moon rise, the stars in the sky, a shooting star zip overhead--and the movie was good too.  A perfect evening!


Cathy said...

Oh what a neat way to see the last Harry Potter movie. Would be neat to have a distant T-storm giving a light show during the final battle.

I can't wait until it comes out on Dvd. I figure in late Oct it will come out.

Darcy said...


I have always loved drive-in theaters and your description took me right back to when I was a teenager in Michigan visiting the Starlight Drive-In outside Lansing. Thanks for the memories!

Carolyn H said...

Cathy: a (very) distant thunderstorm would have worked, but I seem to remember that they stop the movie if the weather gets really bad--so I wouldn't have wanted that to happen!

Darcy: I'm just glad there's a few of these drive-ins still around. It's sad to think of kids growing up without ever enjoying this experience!

Cicero Sings said...

Sounds fun! No drive ins left up here to my knowledge (in B. C.). So much "atmosphere"!

Woodswalker said...

Ah, the memories! Thanks for this.

Scott said...

All I remember about my drive-in days are (1) intense, sticky heat with the windows closed and (2) hordes of mosquitoes with the windows open. Maybe it's just where I grew up.