Thunderbird Drive-In

11091 Folsom Boulevard,
Rancho Cordova, CA 95670

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DishpanHands on August 24, 2017 at 7:28 am

NYozoner I just saw your message, thank you! I was so curious that I went to the State Library to look at the old phonebooks to see if I could find it. It was indeed the one you say, and was listed under “Mather Auto Drive” with the phone number 363-5959. It didn’t list the address other than “Folsom Blvd.” I did see it mentioned in a few old drive-in journals for the trade.

NYozoner on December 7, 2016 at 9:27 pm

DishpanHands: The drive-in you are referring to was the Mather Auto Movies.

DishpanHands on September 30, 2016 at 8:03 am

Does anyone remember a drive-in in the 1960s on Folsom Blvd. between Mather Field and Bradshow, on the right (north) side of Folsom Blvd as you’re heading toward Sacramento? I don’t remember its name, but am pretty sure I’m not thinking of the Thunderbird.

Backseater on May 14, 2016 at 10:09 am

Saw the original “Planet of the Apes” there in 1968. I was in USAF Navigator School at MAther AFB which was just down the road.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on January 25, 2009 at 4:38 pm

Boxoffice Magazine’s issue of October 25, 1965, gives the opening date of National General’s Thunderbird Drive-In as September 1 that year. It also confirms the car capacity as 1,182, and the architect as Gale Santocono.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on December 22, 2008 at 7:47 pm

This location is in Rancho Cordova. The address Lost Memory posted is correct.

The theater was scheduled for a fall, 1965, opening, according to an item in the May 31, 1965, issue of Boxoffice Magazine. The name had not yet been chosen. The drive-in was being built by National General Corporation, and was slated to accommodate 1,182 cars. The architect was Gale Santocono, of San Francisco.