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The Princess Theatre building is currently being utilized as a medical clinic (The Neighborhood Clinic), and the building has been nicely restored. I have uploaded some current photos of the building.
The location of the drive-in would have had an East St Louis mailing address. When Cahokia Mounds swallowed up the area, the parks address was Collinsville, which was the address across the highway from the drive-in. It is actually in an unincorporated areas between Fairmont City and State Park Place.
The ad and (I believe) the photo on this page are of the Jaxon Drive-In, located on Nashville Highway, and not the Jaxon South Drive-In, which was located on Highway 45 South between Jackson and Bemis. They were two completely different drive-ins, though I do believe they were operated by the same company. I am not 100% sure that the photo is the Jaxon Drive-In and not the Jaxon South Drive-In, but it is positioned in the way I remember the Jaxon Drive-In screen being positioned. I believe the Jaxon South Drive-In opened later than the Jaxon Drive-In, and closed earlier. I only drove by the Jaxon South a couple of times, but drove by the Jaxon fairly often.
Not a lake in photo. Heavy rains caused flooding when photo was taken.
This theater reopened in April 2019, and is now operated by VIP Theaters.
I recently drove by and discovered that the Dallas Theatre building has sadly been demolished. I am not sure if it was ever called the Urbana Theatre.
I recently drove by the Sharon Theatre for the first time in many years and uploaded some photos. I was happy to see the building is still standing and in relatively good shape considering its age. It has obviously had some use in recent years, but not sure for what purpose. The lobby looks pretty rough, but there are paint cans and other building materials inside as though somebody has recently been working to restore it.
Zip code for the current location of Damsite would be 65049, Lake Ozark MO.
approximate location of entrance to Murray Drive-In 2018
Location of Central Cine is now Goody’s.
I visited the former site of the Sundown in December 2018, and uploaded a few photos. There is a construction company there now, but you can still make out the approximate location of the field and screen. The highway that was 2 lanes when the drive-in was open is now 4 lanes, and I believe part of the field was taken up when the highway was widened.
The Capitol was open until at least 1966.Probably closed in 1967 when the Cheri Theater opened.
I have seen a photo of the Capitol Theatre from the 30’s showing OLIVER TWIST, which was released in 1933, which would seem to indicate it was re-named the Capitol in the very early 30’s. The name “Dixie” is still visible on the second story of the building, but the marquee has been changed to “Capitol”.
By the 1970’s, this drive-in was showing adult movies, while the Jaxon and Jaxon South drive-ins were showing more mainstream movies. It was located in what was pretty much a rural area, and the screen faced away from the highway, which I guess made it ideal for adult movies. It was open at least through the late 70’s or early 80’s.
I have wondered if this could possibly have been built as an autoscope drive-in to show adult movies due to the odd shape of the field and the name (Mini 5) being similar to the Mini Drive In in Joplin MO (just down I-44 from Lebanon) which was an autoscope which showed adult movies. The screen in the photo was very basic, and looked almost home made, and might have been added later. Lebanon is also only about 30 miles from Buffalo MO, home of the longest lived autoscope drive-in, so the concept was familiar in the area. I have not been able to uncover any evidence about this however.
The building housing this theater was demolished last year, and a new building was constructed which houses a large boat dealership. The Baymont Inn is now Quality Inn.
Interesting that the mailing address was Barlow, because that location is much closer to La Center than Barlow, but I guess that it was on a rural route (Route 2) out of Barlow rather than La Center. Boundary lines for post offices do not always align with town lines or city limits!
With the gracious assistance of the Ballard-Carlisle Historical and Genealogical Society, I have been able to locate and download a photo that includes the Autoscope Drive-In from 1962. They believe it continued in operation until at least 1965. So far, the folks I have talked to do not remember it being an “autoscope” type drive-in, but they are checking with their membership to see if anybody remembers if it started out that way. They also are trying to help me locate a more close up view of the drive-in. Hopefully, I will have more information soon.
Autoscope Drive-In 1962
I lived in Cairo IL (about 12 miles from Barlow) from 1983 until 1997, and during that time, I tried to gather information about all the drive-ins in southern Illinois, and western Kentucky, but was never aware that this one even existed. I never heard anybody even mention it. There was one drive-in in Cairo, and several in Paducah, and though most of those were closed by 1983, there were remnants and/or memories of all of them. With regard to location for such a large drive-in, you have to remember that Cairo was still a thriving city of almost 10,000 in the mid-50’s, and so it is likely that it could have also drawn from Cairo as much or more so than Paducah. When I first heard the name “autoscope”, I just assumed that it was a traditional autoscope, which were geared towards small towns and small fields, but a 600 car drive-in would require a lot of land. It is interesting that he used the “autoscope” name, designating the smallest drive-in screen imaginable, to advertise the Cinemascope “largest screen in Western Kentucky”! It’s interesting also that it may have at one time been called Superscope instead of Autoscope.
Princess Theatre in the 1940’s.
Just recently, the city of Pevely sponsored the showing of a movie at this drive-in, and there is now a Facebook group dedicated to “Restoring the Peveley Drive In”.
The Sky Vue plans to reopen very soon. You can find them on Facebook.
Good news for the I-70 Drive-In! After some concern that Globe Cinemas would not be able to convert to digital, it has reopened this year under the operation of B&B Theatres, who have installed digital projection for all 4 screens. B&B will also operate the Globe’s Twin Drive-In in Independence, where they are also installing digital projection. Hats off to a movie chain making the effort to keep drive-ins open. B&B also operates the Moberly Five and Drive, a combination of 5 indoor screens and one drive-in screen in Moberly MO.
I love this photo because I saw one movie in my life at the Loew’s Crescent and it as CARRIE, so this photo must have been taken about the same time!