Thunderbird 601 Drive-In

3729 US 601,
Salisbury, NC 28144

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Aerial 3/1995

Opened as the Highway 601 Drive-In on June 10, 1952. The name was changed in 1971 to Thunderbird 601 Drive-In under ABC Southeastern Theatres. It was closed under Plitt Theatres on November 1, 1987, and has since been demolished.

Contributed by Matthew Mandarano

Recent comments (view all 12 comments)

KenLayton on April 11, 2014 at 1:53 pm

That would be nice to get this theater open again . :)

KenLayton on April 11, 2014 at 5:46 pm

Reopening this theater would be easier than building a new theater. The reason is the zoning is probably still good for this theater.

WildJoker1975 on April 13, 2014 at 2:22 am

Anybody knows who I need to talk to about reopening this theater???

KenLayton on April 13, 2014 at 12:31 pm

Are there any real estate company signs posted on the property? If not, then a trip or phone call to your county tax assessor’s office could tell you who owns the property and you could go from there.

Mmandarano on April 14, 2014 at 11:26 am

WildJoker, get in touch with me. I was scouting this location for reopening about 6 months ago. I’m not sure there is much grade left in the land and there is nothing usable on the premises in regards to structure, but I have some information on who owns the property, contact info on the last operator of this drive-in, pictures from last fall of what the property looks like, not to mention some quotes on screen, digital projector, vending equipment, etc. I’d be interested in talking with you, maybe we could work together as I’ve flirted with the idea of re-opening a drive-in in Piedmont NC for some time now. My email is — thanks!

raysson on April 24, 2014 at 2:30 pm

It was known as the Highway 601 Drive-In when it opened on June 10,1952. In my possession I have the ads for its grand opening through vintage newspaper scans. If you need to see them,please let know. My e-mail address is . Thank you.

raysson on April 24, 2014 at 2:31 pm

STAR WARS played here as a re-release on July 28,1978. It was so successful that the management kept it on the venue until September of 1978.

ephillips on December 14, 2014 at 11:14 am

WildJoker and Mmandarano, any progress on the possiblity of reopening this? I was riding by there today on my bike and thinking about how much fun it would be to schedule a bike-in movie ride on Friday/Saturday nights. I love outdoor movie theatres but all the ones still in existence are too far to drive to, much less bike. I had toyed with the idea of opening one a few years ago. I have some ideas and suggestions if you are serious.

Kenmore on December 16, 2014 at 10:25 am

The location of the drive-in is approximately 3729 US 601 (Google). Only the outline, the entrance and a few ramps remain.

SalisburyNC on March 13, 2019 at 2:57 pm

I think the last movie shown there was Flashdance. We went to see it because it was the last movie shown there.

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