Recently the sole surviving drive-in movie theater anywhere around here was in danger of closing. Newspaper articles and petitions ensued, and while I never saw a petition to sign, the threatened closing brought back memories. And, no, these are not racy anecdotes of steamy sex inside cars, but rather three g-rated incidents I recall.
Mid 1950’s: a group of us, boys and girls, not paired off, went to the Meadow Glen Drive-in in Medford. It was probably late March, and we girls, coming from a church activity, were wearing nylons and dress shoes. Our feet were so cold that when we went to the Ladies’ Room we took turns sitting up on the counters and sticking our feet under the hand-dryers!
1963: I was living in a small farming community outside Rochester, NY, and one of my neighbor-friends was rather kooky and known to get in her car, sometimes with friends, and just take off on road trips. I was outside mowing the lawn when she and a couple of friends pulled up and shouted, “Want to go to Oklahoma with us?” Surprised, I asked, “How long will we be gone?” Everyone started laughing. “It’s a movie. It’s at the drive-in.” And off we went.
1971: My kids were 5,7, and 9, and we were staying on Long Island. Bored, I decided to take them to the Drive-in, figuring they’d just sleep. The movie, starring Jack Lemmon and Sandy Dennis was a Neil Simon comedy of a mid-western couple in New York City for a job interview. They suffered every possible big-city indignity, all funny to adults, but when it got to a mugging and a kidnapping by armed robbers, my nine-year-old, still awake, moaned from the back seat, “Why would you take me to this movie? You know how impressionable I am!”
© Dorothy C. Judd
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