Immortalized in song, literature and film, cars have come to represent the national spirit. For many American families, the drive-in movie theater is the ultimate roadside attraction. While feelings of nostalgia may dominate discussions of drive-ins, they are still connected to our current national consciousness. With over 300 nationwide, drive-ins may not be as ubiquitous as they once were, but they have endured as other traditions fell by the wayside.


Here are 4 reasons to look for your local drive-in this summer.

From Sea to Shining Sea

Although populous states like New York, Pennsylvania and California tend to have more theaters, you can find a drive-in theater in nearly every state. According to Nerve, as of July 2014, there were 338 theaters across 47 states. Visit to find a drive-in near you.

American Institution

The drive-in has been an important American institution nearly as long as the car itself. The first drive-in opened in Camden, New Jersey in 1933. While far from their peak in popularity during the 1950s, eighty-two years later, drive-ins remain a part of our national identity.


Despite its image as a retro recreation, many drive-ins are making the necessary switch from 35mm film to digital projection.

Summer Pastime

Since most drive-ins are only open in the summer, catching a showing is a splendid seasonal activity. Enjoy a pleasant summer evening from the comfort of your backseat.

Are you going to a drive-in this summer? Let us know in the comments below.