Virginia’s 6 drive-in movie theaters make for dreamy summer nights

Virginia’s 6 drive-in movie theaters make for dreamy summer nights

Photo courtesy of Hull's Drive-In via Facebook.

By Aila Boyd

June 4, 2024

Virginia’s summer nights are idyllic, offering a canvas of clear skies and gentle breezes that are hard to resist. And what better way to embrace the season than by reliving a classic pastime under the stars?

While the era of drive-in movie theaters may seem like a bygone memory, six iconic venues across the commonwealth are keeping the tradition alive.

Hull’s Drive-In Theatre

Location: 2367 North Lee Hwy. Lexington, VA 24450

Even though Hull’s Drive-In Theatre is going strong today, it almost faced the same fate as many drive-in theaters across the country in the late 1990s. Luckily, a group of Rockbridge area citizens came together to save the circa-1950 theater. As a result, it has continued to serve up a good, old-fashioned drive-in experience to movie-goers.

The drive-in offers double-feature Fridays and single-feature Sundays. Its season starts in April and wraps up in October. Movies start roughly 20-30 minutes after sunset, with tickets costing $10 for adults and $6 for children for a double feature. The theater is pet-friendly, but dogs are required to be on a leash.

Family Drive-In Theatre

Location: 5890 Valley Pike, Stephens City, VA 22655

Virginia’s 6 drive-in movie theaters make for dreamy summer nights

Photo courtesy of Family Drive-In via Facebook.

The Family Drive-In Theatre has been showing Stephens City residents all the biggest blockbusters from the past 65 years. Today, it bills itself as the only drive-in theater operating in the Washington, D.C. metro area.

Be sure to check the website on Monday afternoons after its schedule has been updated for the upcoming weekend. Tickets are $7 for children and $12 for adults.

Conventional concessions — like popcorn, candy, soft drinks, and ice cream — are served, along with a hot menu that includes burgers, French fries, and pizza.

The theater doesn’t even mind if you bring your pet as long as it’s well-behaved and on a leash.

Goochland Drive-In Theater

Location: 4344 Old Fredericksburg Rd. Hadensville, VA 23067

Virginia’s 6 drive-in movie theaters make for dreamy summer nights

Photo courtesy of Goochland Drive-In Theater.

Compared to most of Virginia’s drive-ins, the Goochland Drive-In Theater is fairly new, having opened in 2009 with the goal of offering an affordable good time within a wholesome environment. Even though the theater has a retro vibe, its projection systems are modern, which allows for sharp images on the big screens and clear sounds.

It shows a unique mix of the newest blockbusters, including double features on Fridays and Saturdays, along with “Retro Nights” that show beloved classics. Each week’s schedule is announced four to seven days in advance. Showtime is at 8:10 a.m. Admission is $26 per vehicle.

Be sure to check out the concessions area, which serves drive-in classics, including gluten-free and meat-free options. The ice cream stand serves both soft serve and sundaes.

Starlite Drive-In

Location: 275 Starlite Dr. Christiansburg, VA 24073

Virginia’s 6 drive-in movie theaters make for dreamy summer nights

Photo courtesy of Starlite Drive-in Virginia via Facebook.

The Starlite Drive-In celebrated its 70th season last year. It kicked off its new season in mid-April. Double feature tickets are $6 for children 6-12 and $10 for adults. The screenings start shortly after sunset.

Concessions served at the drive-in include hot dogs, BBQ sandwiches, French fries, candy, soft drinks, and popcorn.

Feel free to bring your pet with you to this drive-in if it’s leashed.

Park Place Drive-In Theater

Location: 301 Park Blvd. Marion, VA 24354

Virginia’s 6 drive-in movie theaters make for dreamy summer nights

Photo courtesy of Park Place Drive In Theater via Facebook.

The Park Place Drive-In Theater is currently in its second incarnation, having been resurrected in 2000. Its original run lasted from 1954-1983. Today, the theater season runs from April through October. Tickets are $3 for children 5-11 and $7 for adults.

Arrive a couple of hours early to the movie to enjoy the fun activities the theater also offers, including an 18-hole miniature golf course, batting cage, and arcade with pool tables and air hockey. Those with a sweet tooth should also stop into the arcade for ice cream, including over 40 flavors of Hershey’s Ice Cream, banana splits, extreme sundaes, and smoothies.

Central Drive-In

Location: 5113 Kent Junction Rd. Norton, VA 24273

Since opening in 1952, the Central Drive-In has been the place Norton residents have come to see all the latest summer flicks. In fact, reports bill it as the oldest operating drive-in in Virginia.

Tickets are $4 for children 5-11 and $8 for adults. The price includes a double feature.

This article first appeared on Good Info News Wire and is republished here under a Creative Commons license.Virginia’s 6 drive-in movie theaters make for dreamy summer nightsVirginia’s 6 drive-in movie theaters make for dreamy summer nights

  • Aila Boyd

    Aila Boyd is a Virginia-based educator and journalist. She received her MFA in writing from Lindenwood University.

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