2619 Ashland Road,
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The Midway Auto Theatre opened on September 18, 1947, screening the 1945 comedy “Anchors Away” with Frank Sinatra, Kathryn Grayson and Gene Kelly. The Midway Auto Theatre was opened and operated by Allen Shaw and Adolph Ochs dba Central Drive-In Theatre Inc., from Cleveland, OH. It was built at a cost of $90,000 with a capacity of 600 cars. Central Drive-In Theatres was building a chain of drive-in theatres in the state of Michigan and Indiana at that time. Co-Operative Theatres from Cleveland, OH was the buying and booking agency.
In 1946, Sam C. Lombardo, J.C. Lombardo and John Masoni purchased the property on which the Midway Auto Theatre was built on. Did Adolph Ochs and Central Drive-In Theatres lease the property from the Lombardo’s? I could not find any record of it. In 1966 Anthony M. Lombardo took over the ownership of the drive-in. In the 1970’s they held a Flea Market at the drive-in. In 1980 the drive-in was sold to Midway Drive-In Theatre Inc. from Rocky River, OH. It closed at the end of the 1982 season for good. The Midway Drive-In was demolished and it is now an empty field. In looking at property records, the ownership of the Midway Drive-In over the years is muddled. So if anybody has information, please feel free to comment.
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