Alps Drive-In

Alps Road & Baxter Street,
Athens, GA 30606

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awrootbeer
awrootbeer on June 27, 2014 at 8:10 pm

I can lay some lines down about drive-in theatres in and around Athens back in the day. The Alps drive-in WAS on Alps Road back in the mid-fifties before they relocated out on North Avenue on old Hull Road in the sixties when development started on the Beechwood neighborhood and the Beechwood Shopping Center/Promenade across the street. Alps elementary school opened in 1957 and the theatre was still in operation as it was situated across Baxter Street from the school which is now Alps Shopping. I remember when there was nothing but pine trees across Alps Road in front of the schools main entrance. The Athens Drive-in on the Atlanta Hwy was built and opened in 1949.It was located on the Phil Hughes Honda lot before the dealership was built.The entrance to Athens West shopping center(Ingles,etc.), use to be the driveway into the theatre. Alps drive-in closed before 1980 and I ran the Athens drive-in in its final years..1977 to 1985. Before both theatres were demolished, R E M rented both to shoot one of their early music videos.I was in on the shoot and it took about three days at Athens and about one or two days at the Alps.The Alps was owned by the Woodall family,who owned drive-ins all around this area and even Atlanta. The very LAST drive-in to finally close down in our vicinity was Woodall’s 441 Drive-in about 10 miles out heading toward Commerce. I remember it was still showing 1st run movies with two screens into the 1990’s. Athens Drive-in was owned by the Georgia Theatre Company which has all the screens in Beechwood Cinemas today.The Prince Avenue Drive-in was built around 1954 and didn’t last more than 3 years or so. It was located where Homewood Hills Shopping Center sits today. I think the railroad that still has trains running on it behind the shopping center could have contributed to its closing because I remember the tracks ran parallel to parking cars very close to the property at the bottom of a 6 ft bank.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on April 18, 2012 at 1:15 am

jcott,thanxs for the info,Try and check it out next time I am Athens.

jcott
jcott on June 18, 2011 at 4:03 am

I had a discussion with my dad about the Alps Drive-In; he swore that the Alps Drive-In was not actually on Alps Road, but instead on Old Hull Road. I did some research and found this 1973 aerial photo of a drive-in on Old Hull. Turns out Alps Drive-In changed location, probably in the early 70s, from Alps to Old Hull. That’s probably why you don’t remember there being a drive-in on Alps near Atlanta Highway when you were there, Mike; there wasn’t one!

NYozoner
NYozoner on February 2, 2011 at 6:53 am

Tell me about it. It’s most frustrating for me when I read a post from someone on here stating “I visited the site today and took pictures…” but then they don’t leave any further information about the address, such as what part of town it was in, what side of the street, nearby intersections, nearby existing businesses.

The historic aerial photos can very easily document these locations, very quickly, if you know roughly where to look and during what years.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on February 2, 2011 at 12:02 am

I am so glad you are doing this on These Drive-ins.I just wish when I do submit a Theatre that newspaper ad had a street address,so many especially in small towns have no address and I know it does make it hard,I try to go back in the papers and search for an address often with no luck.

NYozoner
NYozoner on February 1, 2011 at 10:38 pm

I’m just taking the clues you guys put on here, and turning them into detailed addresses which can be used with mapping programs such as Google Earth. I feel it’s also valuable to provide an aerial photo image to verify the address. It is good to get these places documented before they fall completely out of memory, as many locations already have.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on February 1, 2011 at 7:08 pm

thanks Again NYozoner.

NYozoner
NYozoner on February 1, 2011 at 6:16 pm

Alps Rd & Baxter St, Athens, GA 30606

The above address will map accurately the location of the drive-in, which is now occupied by Alps Shopping Center.

Here is a 1962 aerial photo of the drive-in, courtesy of Earth Explorer and USGS.

TLSLOEWS
TLSLOEWS on April 28, 2010 at 1:36 am

Thanks again Mike!

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on April 28, 2010 at 1:23 am

Prince Ave.Drive-in was the third and final Drive-in in Athens.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on April 28, 2010 at 1:19 am

like the Bon-Air and Forest Hills Drive-ins and the Woodzo and Newport Drive-ins,The ALPS DRIVE-in theatre was quite close to the ATHENS DRIVE-in. In the 50’s both spots were in the sticks heading to Atlanta. Why were they built so close? The Alps parked 350 cars and was owned by Newman Coker. A ALPS THEATRE would be built in Athens on that side of town.
BWCHICAGO,Are you sure it closed in 1980? Going by the location ALPS ROAD AND ATLANTA HIGWAY i just can’t remember a Drive-in there. That whole area was getting commercial businesses in that area.