Circus Drive-In

8318 S. March Point Road,
Anacortes, WA 98221

500 cars

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Side Refreshment/ Projection Building Circus Drive In

Opened in the late-1960’s by James Bonholzer, who owned a number of theaters and drive-in’s throughout the Pacific Northwest.

The Circus Drive-In would close in 1985. While not a drive-in anymore, the screen and concession stand are still there, but now serves as a scrap yard for buses, RV’s, and campers. Technically it’s not demolished, but I don’t think the current owners plan to move in the near future.

Contributed by John Book

Recent comments (view all 11 comments)

SteveSwanson
SteveSwanson on February 14, 2013 at 1:26 am

I driven past this drive-in on the way to the Blue Fox on Whidbey Island. I’ve only only stopped a few times though, and was ready for another look. It appears the Circus is no longer an ‘active’ storage yard. Most of the boats were in the front part of the field, which is mostly cleared out now. Most of the ones in the back rows looked to be in bad shape, maybe abandoned. The front & backs gates are locked up, but there are some fence panels that have fallen down, granting access, if you’re brave enough.

sophie_evans
sophie_evans on January 26, 2018 at 12:55 am

Does anybody know who the current owners are?

Seattleprojectionist
Seattleprojectionist on January 26, 2018 at 5:05 pm

The theater was operated by Jim Bonholzer, not Honholzer as noted in the overview. There are still members of the Bonholzer family residing in the area. Perhaps you could try to contact one of them.

dansdriveintheater
dansdriveintheater on December 4, 2018 at 2:18 am

would be amazing if it was reopened!

KenLayton
KenLayton on December 4, 2018 at 4:20 am

Looks like a person could reopen this theater because it’s still in decent condition.

terrywade
terrywade on October 25, 2019 at 7:31 am

The Circus Drive In days are numbered Oct 2019. The property has just been sold to the local Indian tribe in the area.They plan on tearing down the Circus lot. We are trying to tell them to keep the great, still in good shape steal large CinemaScope┬« screen, just needs a little paint and fix the rust on the bottom steal. Will make a great nostalgia place to watch DVD movies with a lawn and picnic tables in front for the Native American kids to watch movies is the summer months, no cars. They can put a cheap bright video projector with a good wide zoom lens from any new building they put up on the former Circus space. It will cost them big $ to tear down the screen. Check out some of my new private photos I just took of this classic still in good shape long closed drive In Theatre soon to leave us. Thanks to the current lease holder of RV’s/vans and trailers that let me take photos for ‘Cinema Treasures’ before It goes of the movie lot plus the indoor closed candy/projection building and the spooky managers apartment upstairs. Spread the word to SAVE THE SCREEN PLEASE!! In Anacortes WA Time is running out!

davidcoppock
davidcoppock on October 25, 2019 at 5:09 pm

Was this drive-in site on indian land before it was built? Why the name Circus?

terrywade
terrywade on October 25, 2019 at 5:38 pm

Most of this area was on Indian land a long time ago now they have to buy It back.

KenLayton
KenLayton on October 26, 2019 at 3:42 am

I hope someone can save this theater.

terrywade
terrywade on October 26, 2019 at 4:16 am

I don’t think the local Indian tribe that just bought the Circus Drive in has any plans to re open the place for movies. They just need the land to expand charity things as they have buildings near the drive in now. There is another still open Drive In in Oak Harbor WA not to far away but with a much smaller square type 4.3 screen. I have been in contact with some local people to try to have the new owners save the giant steel screen tower for future use for the Indian reservation for private outdoor movie entertainment. The wide screen looks to be in great shape, just needs some screen paint and the steel support beams need the rust removed and painted over. Let the classic movies show again for the local Native Americans that live in this area. I wonder If It was a Shelby built screen, looks very sturdy. I think It has lights for intermission above the screen?

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