Some of my fondest childhood memories relate to Friday nights at the drive in movie theatre. It was a tradition when I was young and growing up in that magical decade – “the sixties”. Okay – so I’m aging myself, but these days I’m becoming especially vulnerable to anything from the period of my youth. Just ask any baby boomer!
I was actually surprised to discover that the drive-in movie theatre was originally introduced to North America in the early 1930’s. By the 1950’s it had become a part of North American culture and emerged as the number one source of entertainment of movie-goers. The history of the drive-in movie theatre concept can be traced to Camden, New Jersey when the first theatre opened on June 6, 1933. It took the invention of the individual car speakers in 1941 to realize a surge in this unique entertainment trend and the first theatre in B.C. opened in 1946 in Burnaby.
By the 1970’s a change in social landscapes and the soaring rise in land values saw the outdoor movie theatre experience decline so rapidly, that it neared extinction. But that’s not the case here in Langley!
Langley’s Twilight Drive-in movie theatre is the only one of three remaining outdoor theatres in B.C. It is also the largest, compared to the Starlight Drive-in and the Park Drive in theatres in Enderby and Prince George. Sadly, there are only five countries left that list locations for the infamous theatres: Australia, Brazil, India, the U.S. and Canada.
So – if you want to be inspired by memories of the past, or simply enjoy an evening reminiscent of the rediscovered era – slip on your p.j.’s, gather together your family or friends and nestle under a star-filled night with your favorite blankie to see why this experience just may be making a comeback. With popular and new released features every weekend, the Twilight Drive-in is ideal for indulging in a bit of healthy nostalgia.
“That any drive-ins remain today is a credit to their owners’ determination , and the power of novelty and nostalgia to fuel these little engines that could” (British Columbia Magazine, Willis, Summer 2007)