Warner Drive-In

7361 Warner Avenue,
Huntington Beach, CA 92647

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The Warner Drive-In, Orange County’s seventh drive-in built since 1941, opened quietly on June 29, 1961 with just a small ad announcing its attractions, “The Wackiest Ship in the Army” and “They Came to Cordova”. In later listings it shared billing under the Family Drive-In Theatre with the Lincoln Drive-In, formerly the Cina-Car (375 cars), which opened in the late-1940’s as the county’s second-built drive-in.

Both theaters charged $1.50 a carload for second-run movies but their fare improved after they became Pacific drive-ins on February 14, 1962. In fact, every county drive-in that started as an independent eventually was under the Pacific Theatre banner. The 600-car Warner’s last day of operation was in October of 1984, and, as usual, retail stores were later built on the site.

Contributed by Ron Pierce

Recent comments (view all 3 comments)

lahabradq
lahabradq on February 11, 2005 at 10:34 pm

This Drive-In was at the corner of Warner and Gothard in Huntington Beach. I remember going there to see a re-release of Bambi in the late sixties or early seventies with a carload of family members. It had a playground just below the screen where there would be houndreds of kids playing before the film started. Around the parameter of the complex were many huge eucalyptus trees. Just before it closed, Edwards Theatres opened a brand new megaplex at the Charter Center a block away. That was death for this place.

bkazmer
bkazmer on March 15, 2005 at 8:55 pm

This was actually close to the Harbor Drive-in so we often wound up here if the film there was one we had seen or it was crowded. This theater was subject often to the thick fogs that rolled in from the beach since this was a low lying area. Of course sometimes with a date you may never notice the fog since you weren’t watching the film anyway.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on July 6, 2007 at 6:13 pm

A photo of the entrance in the LA Times dated 12/26/84 stated that the drive-in would soon be torn down to make way for an industrial park. The drive-in had been showing Spanish movies.

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