If you love the nostalgic feeling of watching movies under the stars, then use this guide to find Drive-In Movie Theater locations near you!
I absolutely love going to the drive-in and am happy to still have drive-in movie theater locations near me. I love the romantic and nostalgic feeling of watching movies under the stars for a date night. It it also fun taking the kids for a family night out. The girls always think it’s so neat to make a huge “bed” in the back of the truck and watch movies outside.
Don’t worry, the screens are split into different areas for children’s movies and adult movies. So if you are looking to escape for adult time, you won’t be disturbed by kids. If you do bring your kids to a children’s show, most drive-ins offer playgrounds so your kids can burn some energy and stay entertained while waiting for the show to start.
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Another perk of drive-in movie theaters is that they have the largest movie screens!
Even larger than those in indoor theaters. In addition, their snack bar menu far exceeds that of regular movie theaters. Instead of just snacks, you can order full meals at a fraction of the over-priced lobby candy and soda offerings at indoor theaters. If you prefer to bring your own snacks and drinks, you can do that as coolers and outside food are usually permitted. You’ll have to check with your local drive-in to see what they permit you to bring as each location may vary.
Most drive-in movie theaters are a bargain because they usually show two first run movies for the price of one at an indoor theater. I love this because it turns a dinner and movie into a full night out. Especially since we have to drive 50 minutes to the closest drive-in. Because of the drive, this is usually a special treat that we only do a few times a year. But when we do go to the drive-in, we have a great time!
Help Support Drive-In Movie Theaters!
Did you know that drive-ins reached their peak in the late 1950’s and early 1960’s with more than 4000 drive-in movie theaters in the United States? Now there are currently only about 330 drive-ins still open in the United States. This makes me sad, which is why I decided to write this post.
Drive-in movie theaters are worth preserving for so many reasons. Besides offering a great way to spend more time outdoors as a family or date night, most Drive-In Theaters are locally owned. So each time you enjoy a night at the drive-in, you are supporting a local mom and pop.
Drive-In Movie Theater Locations
DriveInMovie.com is the best resource I have found which promotes drive-in movie theater locations across the globe. They have the most up to date database of all currently operating drive-in theaters in the world. You’ll easily be able to find the nearest drive-in and enjoy a nostalgic night of watching movies under the stars.
Drive-In Theater Checklist
To make the most out of your drive-in experience, you’ll want to make sure you are prepared. I’ve compiled a list of items you may want to bring with you:
- A portable radio that runs off of batteries – this way you won’t have to use your car battery as most drive-ins no longer offer the individual car speakers. Make it even more fun with this Studebaker Retro Classic Radio.
- Lots of blankets and pillows to build a comfy “bed” in the back of your vehicle.
- Folding chairs if you don’t have trunk space or prefer chairs.
- Warmer clothes to bundle up in as it gets cooler as the night goes on.
- Cooler of beverages (first check with the drive-in to make sure this is allowed).
- Snacks and/or dinner for during the show (again, check with the drive-in to make sure this is allowed).
- Cash. Some drive-ins are older and may only take cash.
Make sure to add a trip to the drive-in theater to your summer bucket list! Most still stay open through the fall and spring also so enjoy the beautiful weather while watching movies under the stars.
Search all of our fun activities for more fun and inspiration for family fun!
Help keep drive-in movie theaters open by sharing the love. Please share this post so that more people can find drive-in movie theater locations near them!
I love going to the drive in movie theater. We have one that is about an hour and a half from us – so it’s a real trip but it makes it special.
I would love to check out a drive in movie theater! I bet this would be so much fun
That does sound pretty awesome and I had no idea that they did cooked food! I bet watching a Quiet Place at a drive in is even more scary!!!
We almost saw that one, but I wasn’t crazy about the movie that played with it and they don’t let you switch screen between the two movies.
I always have such a blast at the drive in movie theater. I love being able to sit in my car and watch a good flick!
Great post! I wish we had something this cool where I lived. I would totally go support this type of business if I’m in the area.
We have never been to a drive in! This is way cool! I know in NJ the only one is about 2 hours from us.
I guess I should be glad ours is only 50 minutes away. I thought that was far!
I’ve always wanted to go to a drive in movie. It looks like so much fun!
I love going to the drive-in movies when I was a kid. The one my parents took me to had a playground right in front of the screen so her parents could watch the movie and keep an eye on us at the same time! I really should take my kids this summer. They would love it!
They are so fun! I really wish they would make a comeback!
Omg I think I saw this at the movie ” A Walk to Remember” and since then I want to experience it as well! I think it’s super cool and romantic as well. Plus pizzas!
Drive-in movies are always so much fun! It is definitely an experience that is like no other.
Can you believe that I have never experience a drive-in movie?! I will definitely be checking to see if they have any in my area.
You must try it at least once!
I remember doing something like this when I was much younger but haven’t really given it much thought since then. It definitely would be an awesome night out for the hubs and I!
I love that there are some drive-ins still around. You reminded me of a few near me and this give me a great date-night idea. Thanks for sharing!
I love drive ins and get so sad when they close~I took engagement pictures at one!
That is a great idea for engagement pictures!
I absolutely love the drive in! The kids have a blast, the food is good, and we connect as a family. Everyone should go at least once!
I’ve always wanted to go to a drive in theatre. I’m heading to Maine next month and last I knew there was one on the way, so I’ll have to check it out!
Great post…but now I have that goofy jingle running through my head:
“Let’s all go to the lobby…
Let’s all go to the lobby…
Let’s all go to the lobby, and get a bite to eat!”
Hahaha!! Now you have it in my head!
we love our local drive-in, but it gets out SOOO late! and I hate that they don’t let you bring in your own food!
I can’t believe they don’t let you bring your own food. The one near us lets you bring any food or beverages! I love it!
Thx for the search link! I found a theater near me that I didn’t know existed. Yay!!
That is so awesome!
I loved taking our kids to the drive in when they were little! It was a great way for us to get to see movies with wiggly little ones. That theater sold out to developers, unfortunately. There are so few of them left…sad. 🙁
I love drive in movie theater..Brought back my childhood days where i used to visit it with my cousins during summer vacations…What fun we used to have and yes sometimes we used to also pack food like picnic..Surprised that they don’t allow food.
This brought back childhood memories! Going to search for one near me and do a date night! 🙂
I love going to the drive-in. I’m very grateful to have one close by.
Now I want to go search for drive ins. We live in the city and I know where one used to be but looks like the location of yours would be way better than in the middle of town next to a waterslide park on a busy street. I am now on the quest to find one somewhere and give my kids that experience.
I uses to go to the drive in when I was younger. Now the closet one is almost three hours away. It’s too bad really, they are so much fun!
My husband and I were just having a conversation about how we have never been! This is definitely on our to do list.
Cool post! We live about 20 minutes from the one in Carthage, Missouri. It just opened for the season last weekend, I think. There’s nothing like watching movies under the stars. Now I want to go this weekend!
Love drive-ins. We have two near us one nicer and one cheaper. So fantastic
We have a drive in not too far from us and now I’m asking myself why I’ve never been! Its going on the list for summer activities!
It has been many years (too many to count) since I went to the drive in movies in MI. This post brought back some good memories of those times!
This is a great post! I didn’t realize there was a website showing all of the drive ins! Your posted reminded me that I have free tickets that I won to go to our local drive in theatre 😁 Sounds like your family has a wonderful time.
I’ve always loved the look of drive-ins when they’ve featured in films and on TV, but have never had the change to go to one. Sad we don’t tend to have them in the UK.
It was always such a treat to go! We used to back up my dad’s van and sit in beanbags in the back!
How fun! We don’t have any drive through theaters here. However, we went to one in Disney World. It was so much fun!
aah wow I have always wanted to do this!! To me it one of those typical American traditions that we don’t have in the UK… although occasionally there are special events. When I was in Hawaii they had a massive open air theatre on the beach which was very cool. Fabulous!
Thanks for reminding me of this classic favorite activity. It has been a literally, ages, that I have been to a drive-in theater. Appreciate the link and the inspiration!! Can’t wait to take the kids… 👍🏼
So fun! We have a drive-in theater in our town and may have to be shut down because of noise complaints. So sad. It was there first. They shouldn’t have built or purchased houses so close if they didn’t like it. Great fun for friend, families and date nights!
That’s a bummer! Can’t believe they shut it down. I agree, it was there first!
This is one thing I’ve always been jealous of Americans for. We’ve never had drive in movie theatres in the UK and I really wish they did. Your memories have really conjured up some vivid images for me. So sad that the numbers have massively dwindled. Now we need to save rhinos, gorillas and drive in theatres.
That’s a good list of items to save for sure! They need drive=ins near you!
What a fun post! I love drive-ins! I, too, am sad that there are not many left but I’m fortunate to have one not far from me 🙂
My husband and I have talked about going to one for forever. Of course the one closest to use closed down. I feel like it is such a fun and unique experience. Plus I can bring my own food lol
hah! This is one of my first posts. I wrote about our experience in a drive in. We were finally able to bring our baby with us to a movie date.
I’ve always wanted to take the kids to a drive-in movie. I didn’t even think about the radio aspect of things or the fact that there may be a playground to keep them entertained. These are great tips! Now, I’ll just have to go look up where to find one!
I love this! I moved from Whidbey Island, WA and they had a drive-in movie theater there that was a focal point of the community. When movies went digital they almost went under due to the cost of the equipment needed to convert. I have never seen the community rally quite like I did when the theater was threatened. Thankfully they were able to save the theater and people still go every night that they are open. I miss being over there and being able to enjoy it with my family. I will definitely be checking your link to see where our nearest one is at!
I am so happy to hear that everyone came together and saved the drive-in! How wonderful!
Our nearest drive-in is 45 minutes away, but it’s still so worth it. The kids love it, and our little one can join in on the fun without having to worry about her disturbing other movie patrons.
I love drive-in movie theaters! I haven’t been to one since I was younger, but I would love to go to them more often. It’s definitely something we want to do with our son this summer!
Oh I used to love going to the drive in! I don’t think there are any around me. I’ll have to check!
Oh how fun! I want to go to a drive in movie with my family!