Tower Drive-In

1901 Whiskey Road,
Aiken, SC 29803

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Tower Drive-In

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The Friendly Drive-In in Aiken was a location that didn’t last long. Did these owners think Aiken could support so many screens? Granted, the bomb plant was in full swing, but so many drive-ins!

The friendly Drive-In was located on Whiskey Road almost to New Ellenton, S.C. It was one of the few drive-ins in the Augusta area that I never went to!

It was a pretty good size lot initially parking 200 cars and was opened March 1, 1951 by Billy King. For the 1952 season it was renamed Tower Drive-In. By around 1953-1954 it was owned by Consolidated Theatres and the car capacity had increased to 400. Consolidated was located in Charlotte, NC.

Contributed by Bill Barkley

Recent comments (view all 8 comments)

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on December 12, 2009 at 8:26 pm

Bill was right while the Bomb plant was in full swing; Drive ins sprang up everywhere in Aiken County.Only to have a short life span.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on May 2, 2010 at 6:03 pm

Oak Ridge,Tenn. probably had the same expansion of screens in the 50’s.Both Cities built the A-Bomb.

AndyCallahanMajorMajor on October 19, 2010 at 9:17 pm

This one was just in from the southwest corner of Whiskey and Pine Log Roads. It’s been obliterated by modern retail.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on June 29, 2011 at 3:10 pm

Thanks Andy,Sorry it took so long to read this,I will pass the info on to Bill.

jwmovies on December 21, 2012 at 7:21 pm

Approx. address for this drive-in was 1901 Whiskey Road. Now The Village @ Whiskey Road Shopping Center.

NYozoner on January 4, 2015 at 1:42 pm

Both the Fox Drive-In and the Tower Drive-In are indicated at the same location on CT, Whiskey Road at Pine Log Rd.

Were these the same drive-in, or were they individual drive-ins at different locations? Can any locals clear this up?

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on January 4, 2015 at 2:08 pm

The Tower Drive-In is listed in the 1952 edition of Theatre Catalog with 200 car capacity operated by Billy King. The Aitkin Drive-In is also listed but no mention of a Fox Drive-In.

In the 1953-1954 edition of Theatre Catalog the Tower Drive-In (now 400 cars( and the Fox Drive-In (600 cars) are listed as being operated by Consolidated Theatre out of Charlotte, NC.

dallasmovietheaters on July 31, 2015 at 5:48 am

Opened originally as the Friendly Drive-In Theatre on March 1, 1951. For the 1952 season, it changes to the Tower Drive-In Theatre. It competes against the Aiken Drive-In Theatre and, on July 1, 1952, Consolidated Theater’s Fox Drive-In which celebrated its grand opening on Highway 19. Consolidated buys the theater at the end of the season now owning both the Fox Drive-In Theatre and the Tower Drive-In. The Fox would outlast the Tower lasting into the 1970s.

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