Route 35 Drive-In

2821 State Route 35,
Hazlet, NJ 07730

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Route 35 Drive-In

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Another of the dozens of drive-ins that were once all over New Jersey. The Loew’s 35 Drive-In was opened in around 1956, with John Wayne in “The Searchers” and Jack Carson in “Magnificent Roughnecks”. The location was sometimes given as Keyport. It was one of the first of Loew’s outdoor theatres.

It had a capacity for 1,400 cars on its 22 acre site. The drive-in had an all-steel reflective screen which was 125 feet wide and 52 feet high. The large concession building had an outdoor patio with tables & seats. There was a circus-themed childrens playground which contained a miniature train, a merry-go-round, swings and slides. The drive-in was open in winter, as it provided in-car heaters.

A twelve screen multiplex was built on the site of this drive-in.

Contributed by RobertR

Recent comments (view all 18 comments)

RobertR on November 6, 2005 at 5:12 am

This ad lists the Loew’s Route 35 Drive-in as showing a closed circuit tv fight. I don’t recall shows like this at Drive-in’s?
View link

ectojedi1 on January 9, 2006 at 5:14 pm

I remember the drive-in very well. It was a major factor in our family travels from Brooklyn to New Jersey. The only movie I distinctly remember seeing there though was “Arachnophobia” and for good reason. It was a hot summer night when we saw it and we were sweating buckets in the car. We rolled down the windows and being in the middle of a grass lot that probably wasn’t the best idea. The bugs (mosquitoes specifically) started to creep in and watching “Arachnophobia” really didn’t help.

It was still a great and unique attraction which I really wish remained. It sadly gave way to a completely foreign establishment to us New Yorkers a wholesale warehouse known as the Price Club (now Costco) and the Multiplex Cinemas. The Multiplex instantly tried to win over saddened drive-in goers by showing a few blockbusters for like 50 cents a pop. I think they showed “Batman,” “Ghostbusters,” and “Wayne’s World,” but I could be wrong. Does anyone remember?

Vito on April 29, 2006 at 2:15 am

Joshua, I was working for National Amusements at the time, I have sent you an E-Mail, perhaps I can help.

Ectojed, I opened the Hazlet Multiplex and remember 50 cent day, it is kind of a blur because we were swamped from opening to closing. The complex was sold out for much of the day, in fact the box-office lines often streached all the way to Route 35. By the way everything was 50 cents, including all the concession items. For $2 you could get a ticket, popcorn, hot dog and a soda.

JCharles on March 20, 2010 at 8:05 pm

This drive-in can be seen in the horror film BLOOD RAGE (aka NIGHTMARE AT SHADOW WOODS), produced in 1983.

Drive-In 54
Drive-In 54 on February 8, 2012 at 2:55 pm

I uploaded it, is from 1979..what happened to the old picture?

Drive-In 54
Drive-In 54 on February 8, 2012 at 6:31 pm

DEFG..You posted some great pictures! Did you work there?

paul7350 on July 15, 2012 at 12:58 am

Here is a link to an article describing the drive-in when it opened.

hurricanewilson on July 28, 2012 at 2:42 pm

Went there as a child. Had a really cool train that circled the screen. One of the places that inspired this song. Check out track #7, THE DRIVE IN PICTURE SHOW, by Roger “Hurricane” Wilson.

TheALAN on March 25, 2015 at 10:42 pm

“The Searchers” (1956 Warner Bros.) starring John Wayne (1907-1979) and Jeffrey Hunter (1926-1969) plus “Magnificent Roughnecks” (1956 Allied Artists) starring Jack Carson (1910-1963) and Mickey Rooney (1920-2014) opened the Route 35 Drive-In. Since “Magnificent Roughnecks” was not released until Sunday, July 22, 1956, the Route 35 could not have opened any earlier.

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