Cascade Drive-In

1100 E. North Avenue,
West Chicago, IL 60185

Unfavorite 14 people favorited this theater

Showing 1 - 25 of 31 comments

Mister_Comics on October 22, 2017 at 6:46 pm

Was there last night 10/21/2017. This drive-in is fine. A lot of people were there. Plenty of places to park. View of the screen is good. (Didn’t check out in the back sections). Sound is good. They have the old style speakers that you can attach to your car window. The bathroom was fine and clean. The people at the concession stand were very friendly. Food was good. Prices were reasonable. If your going there use a Groupon and save some money and get FREE small popcorn. Popcorn was good.
I don’t have any complaints about this drive-in. Only complaints I have are with the people coming in for the second feature while the first movie is playing, some of them drive in with their lights on.

Savage on October 23, 2016 at 11:20 pm

I’ve gone there many times as a kid in the 80s and 90s ! I really remember going there in the summer of 1989 to go see Batman and cars were backed up all the way to White Castle 2 miles down the road !..Also,seeing an odd double feature:Tango & Cash \Friday The 13th:part 7 a year or two later ..Like ALL drive ins that existed (still to this day)they always have VERY bad food , horrible restrooms ,arcade games that steal your quarters and employees that don’t care if you just spent $20 on rip off arcade games and food that will make you crap blood for the whole summer !.But,This place holds memories!

Broan on January 23, 2016 at 3:50 pm The Cascade may be threatened in the future by property owners, over the objections of its operators.

Chris1982 on September 20, 2014 at 9:35 am

According to their website the drive-in has made the conversion to digital projection.

arayoflight771 on July 7, 2013 at 5:43 pm

I went there the other night, drove all the way in front the city only to be threatened and ran after by the security guards! We were sitting many rows back and my boyfriend drives a kia soul (not that big of a car) but rude people sitting in chairs behind us stated they couldnt see AFTER THE FIRST MOVIE WAS ALREADY DONE! We explained to them I had a hard time seeing from far away and there are no other spots available anyways (the place was packed!). I then went to the bathroom during intermission where a security chased after and told me I was trespassing and that he was going to handcuff me! HE GRABBED MY ARM HARD AND I RAN FOR MY LIFE!!! I yelled at him “you cant touch me!” Thankfully my boyfriend was there to put a stop to him and told him to stay away from me, but he threatened to arrest my boyfriend also! We paid $9 per person to be there and they had no right to threaten me, chase me, OR PUT THEIR HANDS ON ME! I was so scared I called the police who came quickly and spoke to the guy. But I was so scared after that he was going to come after me we left the movie theater! WARNING TO PEOPLE WHO GO TO THIS DRIVE IN! DONT GO!

MPol on June 10, 2013 at 7:35 pm

Well, if the smaller, independent, non-profit movie theatres convert to digital projection, it only makes sense that drive-ins, too will have to follow suit if their proprietors wish to keep them open and in business.

margo200 on December 10, 2012 at 8:53 am

When I worked there in the late 60’s to mid 70’s, we would fill the place when we played family movies like Disney. The Charuhaus' were talking then about converting to a twin, but the private sewer system in the back made it difficult. Plus the projection building is in located in row 4 of the 12 row theater.

CSWalczak on October 30, 2012 at 7:33 am

Another article about the options the Cascade is considering as it struggles to meet the digital challenge can be read here.

Drive-In 54
Drive-In 54 on September 18, 2012 at 9:07 pm

I’m surprise it has not been twined yet with a parking ramp that big? Can they fill it ever night? But, since it is the only drive-in left in the area…

jwmovies on September 18, 2012 at 8:50 pm

Correct address is 1100 East North Avenue.

rivest266 on June 24, 2012 at 7:26 pm

August 3rd, 1961 grand opening ad uploaded in the photo section.

krebs on August 1, 2011 at 5:46 am

MY wife and I went to the drive-in theater last nite (7/30)with our two dogs and had a very nice time. However,according to their web site the first feature was to start a 8 PM and the second feature was to start at 10:05 PM. The first feature did not start until after 9 PM. They should either put the correct information on their website or make announcements at the theater as to the correct starting times.

kencmcintyre on March 1, 2009 at 5:33 am

Here is part of a September 1989 article from the Illinois Daily Herald:

Jeffrey Kohlberg is a drive-in movie nut. He began working at his father’s drive-in when he was eight years old â€" painting, cutting grass, working the concession stands, picking up golf balls at the driving range that was part of the old 53 Drive-In in Palatine. His dad, Stanford Kohlberg, at one time operated 50 theaters. Today, Kohlberg, 42, is back in the drive-in business after being out of it since 1987, when a Palatine drive-in .that he and his sister, Jarrol Cataldo, rented from their dad, was sold. The two own 53 Drive-In Management Inc., in Lincolnshire, which has operated the Des Plaines Theatre since 1985 and which this year took over operation of the Cascade Drive-In in West Chicago.
“The finest drive-in in the U.S.,” Kohlberg calls it, speaking admiringly of how well maintained it was by its previous operator. While it was built in the 1950s, it looks new, he said. “That place is like it’s been in a time capsule all these years,” he said.The previous owner, Spiro Charuhas, sold the drive-in to an investment group when he decided to retire, and Kohlberg was able to lease the theater until some other plan comes along for the land.

margo200 on May 26, 2007 at 2:00 am

I worked for Basil Charuhas' son, Spiro (Spike), for 8 summers (and a few very cold winters). I even met my wife of 30 years there. She was a cashier and I was a ramp attendant.

margo200 on May 26, 2007 at 2:00 am

I worked for Basil Charuhas' son, Spiro (Spike), for 8 summers (and a few very cold winters). I even met my wife of 30 years there. She was a cashier and I was a ramp attendant.

Life's Too Short
Life's Too Short on February 20, 2007 at 3:49 pm

This was the site of my one drive-in visit. I made the effort to go out here and see a movie about six years ago because I figured these places were on their way out. It was pretty cool. People backed up their minvans to the screen, pulled out lawn chairs, tuned the sound in on the radio, and had a picnic. In the distance there was bustling in and out of the seedy concession building while kids jumped around on play structures in front of the screen. The movie towered above us against the night sky, and it was of decent quality. Definitely one-of-a-kind environment in my experience.

rgiannelli on February 20, 2007 at 2:37 pm

I saw E.T. at Cascade and I can say it’s one of my favorite childhood memories. There is something magical about pulling up to Cascade on a warm summer night and getting ready to do what people in the ‘burbs have been doing for over forty years. Get there early, get a good spot. Play some frisbee or throw around the football. Pile into the back of the truck with pillows and blankets and a jug of kool aid. Watch the kids faces as the opening credits roll for the hit of the summer. Nothing like it. Who can resist the flippy hot dog and the dancing ice cream? Not me! I hope Cascade is there for my son’s children, just like it has been for me and my parents.

edwardjourdan on August 28, 2006 at 12:09 pm

The Ski-Hi Drive-In Closed in either 1969 or 1970 replaced then by Dispensas Castle of Toys.

mterracciano on August 23, 2006 at 12:00 pm

Does anyone remember the name of the drive in on Roosevelt Rd and Route 83 in Oakbrook Terrace???

YamiFiend2277 on June 15, 2006 at 1:11 pm

I love love LOVE this theater!!!!! The place is truly old school retro and the whole ambiance and experience plays into it! I’m only 22 so I don’t know what it was truly like to go to the ACTUAL drive in like they used to, but I can get a feel for it when I go here! Make sure to come in a truck or convertible if you’re gunna stay in your car cuz tryin to see the screen from the backseat of a regular car sucks. And if you do come in a regular, bring camping style chairs to setup outside er something (and blankets since it does get chilly as the night sets in). The concession stand has an awesome variety of old school drive in foods…….BTW, all BIGGER cars have to park in the rear rows so as not to obstruct the view, keep that in mind!!! AND YOU CAN BRING PETS!!!!!!!!!! I HOPE THEY NEVER CLOSE THIS PLACE, IT NEEDS TO LIVE ON!!!!!!! THEY JUST CLOSED THE ONE IN AURORA SO HELP KEEP THIS ONE ALIVE, GO SEE A DRIVE IN MOVIE!!!!!!

Broan on March 31, 2006 at 4:35 pm

It’s about to reopen for the season. Also it did not open until August 4, 1961. It was built by independent exhibitors Basil Charuhas, Bill Galligan, and Milt Levy. It featured a 40-foot attraction sign with over 3000 lamps simulating a waterfall. It was touted as featuring the newest transistorized sound and having aligned viewing ramps to eliminate hard to see corners.

DuPageDude on September 4, 2005 at 2:58 pm

It’s nice to see a throw-back to the way things used to be! Don’t like the food at the concession stands? Bring your own! We we were kids, money was tight for my folks so my mom used to pop a big brown bag of popcorn and fill a thermos jug with Kool-Aid. I saw some of the greatest movies ever at drive-ins; Willie Wonka, MAd Max, etc. I look forward to taking my kids to the Cascade in a few years as well. Hoppefully they stay around for quite a while, just like another instituion nearby, Sonny Acres!

Jayne2 on March 3, 2005 at 6:41 pm

I think it opens later this month!! Can’t wait.

RobertR on November 24, 2004 at 8:29 pm

This sounds like a great place, hope it stays open many years.