Valley Drive-In

2106 Augusta Road,
Gloverville, SC 29828

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Valley Drive-In

Viewing: Photo | Street View

The Valley Drive-In was owned and operated by Sanford and Foreman and parked 305 cars. Bill Barkley was the projectionist and remembers the Valley fondly. Bill says, "about 1949 Curtis Tarlton built the Valley Drive-In and his wife operated the Orangeburg Drive-In in the next county. It was the second to open."

The Valley Drive-In opened April 1, 1950. Bill remembered the Valley Drive-In ran on a shoestring, "heck, it didn’t even have a soda fountain. A Pepsi driver told me in the days before TV that he would go to the Valley Drive-In on Friday morning and unload his entire truck. He would then go back to the plant and reload."

Bill figured they would pour Pepsi from the bottles in cups over ice and sell for a dime. Essentially he could get three cups from one bottle getting 30 cents for a drink that would normally sell for a nickle.

The Valley Drive-In had a small screen and in the early-1950’s, the owner installed strong mighty "90" lamps and enlarged the screen. Bill said, "he would boast the Valley Drive-In had the largest screen in the south. Whether or not this was true I doubt anyone challenged him!"

Saturday, April 27, 1963 the Valley Drive-In is playing Elvis in "Girls! Girls! Girls!" with a second hit, Mark Robson’s "Lisa" which may have been a bit more serious. The box office opened at 6:45 and the show started at 7:30. Admission was 75 cents and under 12 free!

September 1960 the Valley Drive-In had two big hits in color, "Tarzan The Ape Man" and "The Bramble Bush." And on July 4, 1965 the Valley Drive-In had "Goldfinger." All passes void – admission $1.00 per person.

A group of pine trees were just behind the side/back of the screen and when Bill made changeovers the cue marks would show on the banches.

Ray was always doing promotions. He had a game called Hollywood that had stars listed. It had a still projector and a meter that Bill operated. It would spin and stop on a letter. A take off on Bingo.

Ray had been having bad luck and wanted a large crowd to show up next Saturday night. He said they could play Bingo and spin until someone won $100.00! That Saturday he said it was possible to hit Bingo with 5 spins. Ray spun 1-2-3-4 and then 5. A horn blew and Ray almost had a heart attack!

His hands were shaking as he counted the cash out. He only had ninety dollars and so he gave the guy a check for $10.00! Bill said, "what were the odds – nobody could possibly get Bingo in only 5 spins." Naturally he had to back up next weeks promo and spin until someone won. In other words Bill said, "he had to dole out $200.00 two weeks in a row! Now that’s a theatre story. You just can’t make stuff like this up!"

I give Bill Barkley full credit for this story!

Contributed by Mike Rogers

Recent comments (view all 15 comments)

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on July 21, 2010 at 2:47 pm

No date,but these movies played here at the VALLEY, “WEST BOUND” and “THE THREE MURDERESSES” with Paul Anka. both in color.

AndyCallahanMajorMajor on October 19, 2010 at 7:39 pm

Google gives the Valley the address of 5 Drive-in Road, which is just in from the northwest corner of Augusta Road (SC 421) and SC 481. Poking around with Street View, it appears that there may still be a ticket booth off of SC 481.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on October 27, 2010 at 3:19 pm

Yes,Andy.According to Bill Barkley the Box Office is still standing.

TLSLOEWS on October 27, 2010 at 8:09 pm

Thanks Mike and Bill.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on October 28, 2010 at 2:59 pm

Bill has so many stories.I was lucky to get what got.Wish he would send more for me to put on CT.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on May 2, 2011 at 4:14 pm

June 8 1957 sees “GUNFIRE IN LAWLESS ARIZONA” “LEFT HAND OG GOD” and “BEST THINGS IN LFE ARE FREE”. $100.00 Jackpot that night.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on May 25, 2011 at 10:08 am May 23 2011 has pictures and a story on all the Drive-ins in Aiken County,S, a nice feature.Pictures of the booth are in the article showing the VALLEY Drive-in Booth and operator,Bill Barkley.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on June 13, 2011 at 2:47 pm

Movies that played here

June 12 1961 “BUTTERFIELD 8”

May 4 1962 “WOMEN FROM HELL” “SNOW WHITE AND THE THREE STOOGES” and “CIRCLE OF DECEPTION” {what triple feature,guys.}


June 24 1966 “BLOOD FEAST” theatres must have got a good deal on this one it is playing all over Aiken and Augusta.

jwmovies on December 28, 2012 at 2:58 pm

Above address is incorrect. Approx. address for this drive-in was 2106 Augusta Road.

Drive In Rd. was built AFTER the drive-in closed.

dallasmovietheaters on July 31, 2015 at 3:25 am

Grand opening was April 1, 1950 just two months after construction began.

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