Medford Twin Drive-In

100 Revere Beach Parkway,
Medford, MA 02155

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Medford Twin Drive-In had two screens when it opened in July 1956. The total was increased to four when two more screens were added later. It was closed and demolished sometimes in the 1970’s. It was near Wellington Circle by the orange line subway station. It has been replaced by an office building.

Contributed by Scott

Recent comments (view all 9 comments)

br91975
br91975 on May 8, 2005 at 4:12 am

This drive-in actually closed and was demolished sometime in the early ‘80s. I clearly remember standing on the Wellington MBTA bus platform, waiting with my parents for a bus and watching the Michael Keaton comedy 'Night Shift’ from across the parking lots and highway. A local office for Mellon Bank currently occupies the property.

mmcph
mmcph on July 8, 2005 at 11:06 pm

Across the street from the drive-in use to be a truck stop diner where KISS 108 is now. We use to get greasy corn fritters and watch the movie across the road.

ShooterMcGavin
ShooterMcGavin on August 27, 2007 at 5:54 pm

I worked at the Medford Twin a couple of summers during college(mid to late 70’s)repairing speakers (pre-AM radio days) and working the box office at nights. What a great place to work as a kid. Noreaster0 has all the facts correctly, and quite a few that I didn’t even know. Harry Browning and his sidekick “Cocoa” were fixtures at the theater. Harry would often sit in his cigar smoke filled office above the concession stand monitoring all aspects of the business. Harry was a tough person to work for, but once you earned his respect he was a loyal friend. I often recount stories about Harry with a smile on my face. He truly was an influential person in my life.

Ron Newman
Ron Newman on April 8, 2008 at 1:21 pm

In last week’s Somerville News, Jimmy Del Ponte recounts his memories of going to the Medford Twin and Meadow Glen drive-ins.

noreaster0
noreaster0 on February 18, 2012 at 6:42 pm

Medford Twin Airer Makes Formal Debut BOXOFFICE magazine August 4, 1956 page 79

The Medford Twin Drive In on Revere Beach Boulevard had its grand opening on July 21 (1956) with thousands flocking to see the first twin open-airer in New England.

Owned by Lloyd Clark, Winthrop Knox jr. and George Hackett, this unique theatre has two separate screens and a car capacity of 900 on each side. The two huge CinemaScope screens are located diagonally away from each other.

Charles Cutelis, manager, said that service, courtesy, comfort and convenience are the operating slogans of the company, included in the services are a supervised playground for children, a bottle-warming service for babies and a spotless ultramodern refreshment stand. Fluorescent-jacketed attendants guide motorists in and out of the theatre ramps. Special police details aid traffic on and off the Revere Parkway. Proposed landscaping around the theatre will make it a beautiful spot on the highway. Precision grading insures better viewing from the ramps and the theatre will be completely paved to eliminate dust.

http://www.boxofficemagazine.com/the_vault/issue_page?issue_id=1956-8-4&page_no=79#page_start

noreaster0
noreaster0 on February 18, 2012 at 6:51 pm

BOX OFFICE Magazine July 7, 1956 (Modern Theatre Section, Page 26) A DAY AND NIGHT OPERATION

MEDFORD TWIN DRIVE IN, Medford, Mass.

OWNER: Medford Amusement Corp.

THE FIRST TWIN DRIVE-IN theatre in New England and possibly in the East is scheduled for a July opening in Medford, Mass., on the six-lane Revere Beach Highway.  The owner is Medford Amusement Corp., with Winthrop Knox jr. as president, Lloyd Clark as chairman of the board and George Hackett as treasurer.  All three men are active as exhibitors of four-walled theatres. The new ozoner will accommodate 1.800 to 2.000 cars, half on each side.
                
                  In addition to being the largest drive-in theatre in New England to date, the Medford Twin Drive-In is capitalizing in a most unusual way upon its highway location.  The front part of the theatre, that is, the side nearest the highway, can be operated as a separate entity from the theatre section, and this front part will be open all day long.
                  

STORES FOR RENTAL

This includes the long row of white buildings, to be seen in the left foreground, which are to be built for stores and a paid kiddyland in the fenced-in enclosure (right center of photo i as well as one lane, a stationary one, of the concessions building.  The type of retail stores to be provided and the rental charged is yet to be determined. and it is possible the stores may not be put in this season.  The small triangular building, at left and in front of the drive-in's pylon-type attraction board, is being considered for a gas service station.  The Medford Twin Drive-In faces the six-lane highway which leads from Boston to the beaches. It is in an industrial area,but there also are many homes, tenements and apartments nearby, so that it can be called a densely populated area. This should mean good business not only for the theatre, but for the daytime operation of the stores and kiddyland.
                  

MAY LEASE KIDDYLAND

The owners are considering leasing the paid kiddyland to a concessionaire who would provide more and larger equipment than will be in the drive-in's free playground.  As mentioned before, the kiddyland will be open all day long, but it is likely that it will be closed when the theatre is open to cars. There will be attendants and supervisors to operate the mechanical equipment and watch over the children. The admission to this area has not yet been decided.  The drive-in's free playground also will have trained attendants, and, of course, is only for the children who come to the theatre to see the picture. This playground, with swings, slides, teeter-totters, etc., is located in a circle behind the concessions building and between the two theatres. It will be enclosed by a fence.  The concessions building is in the center of the twin layout, with the projection booth on the top, and the restrooms and storage space beyond on the first level.  The exact policy of the theatre's operation has not been determined as to whether there will be twin film programs on each side or different films will be shown. It has been decided to have the sides open their programs at different times, allowing two separate intermissions at the refreshment stand to ease the traffic.
                  

OPERATE CONCESSIONS IN DAYTIME

The refreshment building, designed by Patrick Sullivan of Cambridge, has a four-lane cafeteria service system, with one additional lane for stationary service. This extra lane is to be in service all day long, as it is easily accessible from the highway for foot and motor traffic. The refreshment stands will sell all the foodstuffs popular to drive-in theatres.  There are two boxoffices, one on either side of the twin entrances, foreground, and two separate entrance drives leading to the ramps in the theatre. If a car goes to the theatre on the right, it enters that side and parks on a ramp. Or. if to the left theatre, a similar procedure.  At the end of the show, all cars proceed to the rear of the theatre where they drive to the left to go out one exit roadway. Since the twin theatres will close at different times, there will not be a general exodus of 1,800 to 2,000 cars at one time. If the theatre is filled on both sides, the first side to start the show will exit its cars first, thus avoiding a bottleneck at the finish of the show. Only 900 to 1,000 cars will leave the theatre at one time, giving the other side a half hour before cars will exit. The entire booth equipment is of Simplex make, installed by National Theatre Supply. This includes the projectors, speakers, screen and sound. Installation was supervised by H. J. McKinney. This company also laid out the theatre and installed the playground equipment. Single ramps will be used in the frontsections of both sides, with double ramps elsewhere.  Tall willow trees are to line the entire drive-in, and also will be planted down the center to divide the two theatre sections.  A chain link fence surrounds the property. The permit to build this theatre was requested in October 1954. Originally, the
                  

Medford City Council barred the theatre as “detrimental to the community.” The following month, the Board of Appeals overruled the Council and granted the corporation the right to erect the drive-in. Later this action was challenged by Mayor Arthur D. Russo and a Medford city councilman named John C. Carr jr. and three other councilmen. who brought the action to the Massachusetts Supreme Court.

CASE WAS DISMISSED

Before it reached the high court, however, Mayor Russo and three councilmen withdrew from the action, leaving Councilman Carr as the sole objector. The Supreme Court recently dismissed the case, holding that the action was not properly brought before it and thus refused a ruling.  Justice John V. Spaulding, in the written opinion dismissing the action said Carr had no standing as an "aggrieved" person to bring the case to court. "The right of appeal must be limited to such municipal officers as have some duties to perform in the building or zoning laws." he said. "A different construction would lead to absurd results."
                  
noreaster0
noreaster0 on February 18, 2012 at 6:56 pm

Medford Twin Helm to Harry Browning BOXOFFICE magazine March 23, 1957 page NE-4

BOSTON.-Lloyd Clark and Winthrop Knox jr., operators of the Medford Twin Drive In, have appointed Harry Browning as general manager. In accepting the new post Browning was forced to relinquish the New England distribution for the James K. Friedrich production “Day Of Triumph” which he had started to lineup for this area. The Medford Twin Drive-In, New England’s only twin open-airer opened its gates March 13 with two different programs on each screen. Browning arranged special “town celebrations” for the first week with city and state officials, high school bands and radio and film personalities on hand for the festivities. Opening night was Medford night, followed by individual nights for Arlington-Winchester, Somerville, Malden, Everett, Winthrop and Revere. Working with Browning in the concessions department is Warren Demming who returns for the second year.

http://www.boxofficemagazine.com/the_vault/issue_page?issue_id=1957-3-23&page_no=72#page_start

noreaster0
noreaster0 on February 18, 2012 at 6:59 pm

Early Autumn Start On Medford Indoor BOX OFFICE magazine September 30, 1963 page NE-2

MEDFORD MASS.-Construction is to start this fall on an ultramodern indoor theatre at the Medford Twin Drive-In, 100 Revere Beach Parkway., according to George J. Hackett, treasurer of Suburban Drive-In Theatre, Inc. The site of the theatre will be a tract lying between the ramp areas facing the drive-in theatre screens. The new theatre is to be equipped with the latest developments in stereophonic sound and projection equipment. It will feature modern décor and seating and will be completely air conditioned. The theatre is to be beautified in association with the Mystic River Dam Project, which is designed to create a new Mystic River basin. (Note: NEVER BUILT)

http://www.boxofficemagazine.com/the_vault/issue_page?issue_id=1963-9-30&page_no=52#page_start

noreaster0
noreaster0 on February 18, 2012 at 7:38 pm

New Exhibitor Group Buys Medford Twin BOXOFFICE magazine May 10, 1965 page NE-1

BOSTON-The Twin Drive-In in Wellington Circle at Medford Mass, has been purchased for what is reported a record price for a drive-in in New England. The owners are a newly formed group consisting of well known theatremen Robert Waldman, David Dick, Steven Minasian and Phil Scuderi, and the area will be managed by Esquire Theatres. According to a spokesman, the purchase of the Twin is only the forerunner of what is expected to be a circuit of drive-ins and cinema theatres in newly developed shopping centers throughout the east. They have already commenced construction of a new twin cinema in the Gansett Shopping Center on the East Providence-Pawtucket line and expect to commence building very shortly another cinema on Soldier Field Road in Brighton, suburb of Boston. Negotiations also have been completed for a twin cinema in a newly developed shopping center in Taunton, Mass. The new company is enthusiastic over plans for the development of a modern shopping center including a twin cinema in Seekonk, Mass., where it recently purchased a 20 acre tract of land. The company points out this location is only five minutes from downtown Providence and with the completion of Interstate 195, Fall River and New Bedford, Mass., the center will be within driving time of these major cities.

http://www.boxofficemagazine.com/the_vault/issue_page?issue_id=1965-5-10&page_no=57#page_start

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