Amboys Drive-In

Victory Plaza,
South Amboy, NJ 08879

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Amboys Drive-In

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The Amboys Drive-In Theater was located in Sayreville, NJ between the very industrialized cites of Perth Amboy and South Amboy and was operated by Redstone National Amusements. It was opened July 11, 1957 by Redstone Drive-In Theaters. The strange thing about the South Amboys Drive-In was that is was located near, and completely visible from the very busy Garden State Parkway and Route 9 highways. As a kid I vaguely remember my parents taking us there to see “MAS*H”. I was a small child and didn’t understand it so I just fell asleep.

Other times I remember driving by it at night and if I’m not mistaken, I could see them playing a Bruce Lee movie like “Enter the Dragon” or something like that. My Dad’s story is that at some point they showed porn. My only guess is that they may have been showing “Deep Throat” when it was released in 1972 since there were really no other porn feature films to show before that. As my Dad tells the story, when they were showing the porn, “Deep Throat”, or whatever it was, it caused traffic jams.

I don’t know what year the drive-in closed, but it was replaced by the 11 screen Amboy Multiplex theater which operates there today.

Contributed by Irv

Recent comments (view all 34 comments)

Thundarr on May 30, 2007 at 3:23 pm

I knew Evelyn since my dad was a projectionist at the drive-in. I was probably 14 or even younger when I first remembered her. She always took care of me when I came with my dad. So I guess I knew her for about 30 odd years or so. She would let me play in the maintenance area of the concession stand with Prince, the German Shepard they had there. She was really a great person, and I am truly glad to have know her. I am saddened by her passing, she was a very kind heartered person, she will be missed.

moog on May 31, 2007 at 8:44 am

Hi Ed. I remember you and your dad. I worked at Amboy from 89 thru 92. Not to go into a long history about myself but I also did the Rialto in Westfield under George Karros, a short run with the Essex local, Movie City pre Mega Movies Days, a rundown twin in Ocean Twp to help out and even Five Points in Union. I’m out of the business now with a pension job, but once in a while the Toto of “Cinema Paradiso” comes out and I look up at the booth with wonder. Theaters that I grew up with are not the palaces that Mr Karros worked but still hold childhood memories for me. GCC’s Menlo Park, Brunswick, Woodbridge and Madison Cinema. Also Cinema 9, The Walker Theater in Brooklyn, Radio City when they played movies and even the Turnpike Indoor.


Bruddy on August 11, 2010 at 7:02 pm

As a child growing up in the 1970s I went with my family to watch movies at the Amboy Drive-In. I vaguely remember that for at least one summer they showed all Disney movies. I saw Fantasia, Bambi, Dumbo, Mary Poppins, The Shaggy DA, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Herbie the Lovebug and a few others. I also remember catching bits of movies whenever my parents drove across the bridge at night from South Amboy to Perth Amboy. It’s truly a shame kids no longer experience the magic of drive-ins.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on August 11, 2010 at 7:08 pm

So right Bruddy all they know is 20 screen monsters.

boomerjohn on April 26, 2012 at 9:37 am

I worked at the Amboy’s Drive-In during the summer of 1969. There used to be a children’s playground, with rides, at the base of the screen to keep the kids amused before the feature started. By ‘69 the only ride that was still in operation was the merry-go-round. One of my jobs was to operate this amusement. We changed the marquee weekly and also repaired speakers and heaters. We also stood guard at the exit gate on RT 35 to discourage folks from sneaking in. We sat in a lawn chair sorrounded by PIC mosquito repelant smoke rings. At closing we directed traffic out and occasionally had to chase out couples who were otherwise occupied. Yes it did show porn in it’s declining year and it was not unusual to see cars pulled over on the shoulder to take a peak. The authorties got involved and the theater died.

Mikeoaklandpark on April 26, 2012 at 12:22 pm

It was open in th elate 70’s. By the time I stated going back and forth between NYC and PHila in 82 and 83 it was closed.

rivest266 on October 16, 2016 at 5:20 pm

This opened on July 11th, 1957. Its grand opening ad can be found in the photo section for this theatre.

NYozoner on December 26, 2016 at 1:19 am

NJ-35 at Victory Plaza
South Amboy, NJ 08879

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