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There are some dark clouds starting to brew overhead here. Sheetz is apparently looking to wipe out another drive-in (and a piece of American culture) by building on the Twin Hi-Way Drive-In site…which makes absolutely no sense since there’s already a Sheetz down the road from the drive-in.
To expand on jwmovies' comment on location…According to the newspaper listings, the original entrance to the drive-in was, in fact, on Mosside Blvd/PA 48. The listings also showed the drive-in as “around the corner from Kaufmann’s” (coincidentally the former site of the Pittsburgh Drive-In that closed the previous year) and “Parkway East 22 Exit 16 — stay on 48 South”
By 1972, the entrance was relocated. Instead of staying straight on PA 48 South, patrons turned left onto Northern Pike, then right on Drive-In Lane (before the entrance to the former Westinghouse Energy Center) and down to the box office.
The July 23 edition of the Post Gazette first showed the drive-in’s new (and final) designated address of 4340 Northern Pike.
Forbes Hospital now occupies the former drive-in site. The “Drive-In Lane” off Northern Pike is still there but it’s a dead-end now.
Final night of operation, according to the listings in the Pittsburgh papers, was September 16, 1968
Final night of operation was either September 27 or 28, 1976. The September 29 edition of The Pittsburgh Press reported construction of a Gold Circle department store on the Ardmore Drive-In site to begin the following month. The confusion of the actual closing date comes from the same article; it indicates that it “closed Monday” (27th), but there is a listing for the Ardmore in the following day’s paper (28th).
The address should read as 5191 Library Road, not Liberty Road
The screen is now gone as well
The Pix Drive-In opened on July 29, 1955. This was located on River St. at North Washington Ave, next to the recently-closed Candlelite Stadium. Just over a month later on September 2, the Candlelite Drive-In opened on the old stadium site at River and Evergreen Sts. After the 1956 season, the two drive-ins merged under the E.M. Loew’s banner and opened as Candlelite-Pix Twin on April 5, 1957. From Historic Aerials, you can see the stadium in the 1949 satellite photo; followed by the drive-in sites in the next available photo from 1960.
Opened on September 20, 1950 with the film “Wabash Avenue”, starring Betty Grable. Located on PA 837, ½ mile from its southern terminus at PA 88. Closed at the end of the 1985 season. The site remained dormant until 1997 when the Residence At Hilltop assisted living facility was built there.
Original grand opening date as the Twin Ranch was February 28, 1952
Grand opening was on April 21, 1949 (2 pages of ads in The Dispatch)
Grand opening was September 2, 1950 (Per Lexington newspaper The Dispatch)
The ad above is one of those misleading prints; it’s actually for the opening of the second season. Unfortunately, this is an all-too-common (and frustrating) problem for drive-in researchers like me. The Bend’s actual grand opening date was July 6, 1950; the ad is on page two of the Bend Bulletin (accessible though the Google newspaper archives).
Historic Aerials shows that Ranalli’s had TWO different sites. The original drive-in was located at the Kohl’s end of Richland Mall at Richland and Wal-mart Drives, facing south. At some point between 1956 and 1959, this was replaced with a much larger drive-in, facing west and built just north of the original at Wal-mart and Krebs Drives where Wal-Mart now stands. Both sites (with the screen having been transferred from the old site to the new) can been seen in the 1959 aerial; the 1969 aerial shows the original site grown over, barely recognizable.
Most of the screen was taken down this past June; all that remains of it as of now are the steel supports.
A moment of silence for the passing of a fine, classic drive-in theater. Photos from the final night coming soon.
The Beaver County Times' website, Timesonline, has reported that this is the Kane Road’s final weekend. The movies featured this Friday, Saturday and Sunday are Blue Jasmine and World War Z. There will also be a flea market on Saturday from 8:00 AM to 2:00 PM.
A great photo of the South Park Drive-In, taken from across the street, is featured in the book from the “Images Of America” series on Bethel Park. Two beautiful color photos of the marquee and screen and box office are featured on the local WQED documentary “Things That Aren’t There Anymore”.
I don’t have confirmation of the exact reasons, Chuck. It may have something to do with the transferring to digital equiment, but that’s only speculation. A definite fact is that the Kane Road Drive-In is going to be sadly, sadly missed. I’ve been going there since 1997.
I found out that the final tentative night of the Kane Road is going to be Sunday, September 15. This all depends on attendance in the next couple of weekends. So, for all who read this, mark this date down but call the drive-in first for verification.
It is with deep regret that I report the upcoming end of an era as the Kane Road Drive-In, after 59 wonderful years, will be closing its doors for good in a few weekends. There was a tailgate party this past Saturday the 10th, but I missed it since I didn’t know about it until now (ARGH!). But I do plan on being there on their final night. I suggested to owner Steve Gray to show a couple of classic films on their last night to go out with a big bang…something like Rebel Without A Cause, Love Me Tender, A Hard Day’s Night, West Side Story, Viva Las Vegas, Bye Bye Birdie, or something like that.
The Cross Keys Drive-In Opened on June 16, 1950 with a performance by the New Oxford High School Band and the film “Streets of Laredo”, starring William Holden, William Bendix and Mona Freeman. Originally owned and operated Midway Drive-In Theater Corp. and managed by the corporation’s president, Richard L. McCool. Located on U.S. 30, 1 mile east of New Oxford and ½ mile west of Carlisle Pike (PA 94). Closed after the 1986 season. The former drive-in site is now occupied by houses (Oak Dr. and Chinkapin Dr.)
Cool photo :)
Opened on June 29, 1950 with the film “Boy From Indiana”, starring Lon McCallister and Lois Butler. Located about a mile west of Waynesburg on Roy Furman Highway (PA 18 South/PA 21 West — formerly Rogersville Rd.)
Opened as York Run Open Air Theater on July 7, 1948 with the western film “Black Gold”, starring Anthony Quinn. Renamed Moonlite by 1950.
Opened on August 29, 1948 with the film “Blondie’s Big Moment”, starring Penny Singleton and Arthur Lake. In 1986, Free Indeed Ministries bought the Family Drive-In which was relegated to Christian and G-rated movies. FIM was still running movies at the Family by August 1993. I have not yet been able to confirm when it actually closed.
Historic Aerials shows the location of the Blue Sky on PA 288 from the 1969 satellite map, about 5 miles east of Ellwood City and 10 miles west of Zelienople. The drive-in site is now occupied by at least two houses (on Field St.) and Sturges Orchard Farm Market.