At the Drive-In



Whenever we go on vacation, my significant other looks to see if there are any drive-ins near our destination. We've gone once or twice, and it makes me nostalgic for something I didn't really experience the first time around.

In many ways, having drive-in theaters makes sense in our area. Families here drive cars the size of McMansions, so seating would be roomy and comfortable. And since drive-ins are more casual and you're in the privacy of your own car, it's more acceptable if you text someone on your cellphone, talk loudly to your neighbor, quiet the crying baby, or do any of those truly irritating behaviors that you do in the multiplex anyway.

It's said that drive-ins closed because of rising land prices and the increasing popularity of multiplexes, but multiplexes can't compete with On-Demand and the real estate bubble has long ago burst, so I think we're poised for a comeback...

Fine, maybe not. But drive-ins are still cool, and it might interest you to know that they haven't all gone the way of the dodo. Here are a few that are still (mostly) in our area. If gas prices weren't so out of control, I'd say it'd be worth a day trip to visit one of these. Instead, I say that if you're going to pass one of these towns on an already-planned vacation, you might want to put a few hours aside to stop by.

Warwick Drive-In
Location: Warwick, NY
Number of Movie Screens: 3
Go Here If: You're planning on checking out any of the quaint artisan shops at the Sugarloaf Arts Village.

Overlook Drive-In
Location: Poughkeepsie, NY
Number of Movie Screens: 1
Go Here If: You have a rising high-school senior interested in investigating the campus scenes at Vassar and Marist.

Fair Oaks Drive-In
Location: Middletown, NY
Number of Movie Screens: 2
Go Here If: You're going to spend the weekend luxuriating in the B&Bs of Milford, Pennsylvania.

Hyde Park Drive-In
Location: Hyde Park, NY
Number of Movie Screens: 1
Go Here If: You're a big fan of the Roosevelts and you want to check out FDR's crib.

Pleasant Valley Drive-In
Location: Pleasant Valley, CT
Number of Movie Screens: 1
Go Here If: You're really, really bored.

Note: Many of these theaters are playing Pixar's Wall-E. I cannot recommend a better movie to see, drive-in theater or no drive-in theater, but some of the film's themes will certainly resonate if you see it in kind of a nostalgic mood. Go for it!

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Marisa LaScala

Marisa LaScala
Elmsford, NY


Associate Editor Marisa LaScala joined Westchester magazine in 2003, and ever since she's blown every paycheck at the Greenburgh Multiplex. She also staunchly defends Richard Kelly, doesn't mind spoiling the endings of trashy movies you're curious about but don't want to pay to see, wishes the Hold Steady would come back and rock out Westchester, misses Arrested Development more than anyone can imagine, and still watches cartoons and Saturday Night Live. You can find more of her cultural criticism at www.popmatters.com, where she is a staff writer.

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