Apache Drive-In

13180 Texas 31,
Tyler, TX 75705

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Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on August 8, 2013 at 9:49 am

I thought this passage may be of interest to our readers:

On entering the lot, I saw the dimmest picture I had ever seen on a drive-in screen.

Parking in the third row from the screen, I got out of the car to investigate. I kept wondering “Why is the picture so dim?”. The ambient light level was so low that I had difficulty making out the shapes of the cars parked around me.

I searched the projection booth and the concession stand for the tell-tale light of a projector. Nothing. I just couldn’t see it. One remote possibility came to mind. The screen of the Apache sits up on a dirt hill most likely created during the clearing of the lot and the construction of the berms. Perhaps a dozen feet in front of the screen sits a small enclosure.

The day I was there before, I didn’t have time to scale the hill to investigate the purpose of the enclosure. Looking into it at night confirmed what I now suspected. The enclosure must house a projection TV unit. I could see a variety of green status lights inside the enclosure. That fact, coupled with the lack of light from the projection booth made a remote projector the only possibility that made sense.

This is the first drive-in theater that I’ve seen that uses a projection system other than standard film projectors. While not a digital projection system, the Apache’s equipment does demonstrate the potential for using non-traditional projection systems.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on August 8, 2013 at 9:40 am

I also added six photos I found in Lost Memory┬┤s post made back in 2004. The photos seem to be from 2001. That post has a long article about this place, from which I may post some excerpts.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on August 8, 2013 at 9:29 am

Ran across this report on a blog…

In east Texas near the town of Tyler, Texas is a dinosaur of a drive-in movie theater called the Apache. It shows only xxx rated movies on the outside big screen and has private video rooms and upstairs indoor movie theater which is open from about 10AM to about 1AM. It is a cool place to cruise and meet someone …

jwmovies
jwmovies on September 4, 2012 at 4:10 am

Address according to Google Maps is 13180 Texas 31, Tyler, TX 75705

Matthew Prigge
Matthew Prigge on April 5, 2012 at 8:29 am

Hello all,

I am doing a large-scale research project on adult theatres and would be very interested to hear from anything who either worked at or attended this theatre during its time showing adult films. If you would like to help me out, you can email me at .

Thanks!

neverf4getme
neverf4getme on May 16, 2010 at 11:25 am

I ALWAYS ENJOYED WATCHING THE ELABORATE DANCE THAT THE CARS PERFORMED IN THE PARKING LOT. MOVING SYNCHRONIZED TO THE MUSIC WHICH WAS THE MOVIE PLAYING ON THE BIG SCREEN. SOME NIGHTS NO MUSIC WAS EVEN NEEDED FOR THE DANCE TO COMMENCE. MIKE AND GLORIA SURE BROUGHT A WHOLE NEW CLIENTELE TO THE THEATER. BOTH COUPLES AND THE YOUNGER CROWD STARTED TO FREQUENT THE MOVIES. NO ONE WAS GONNA GET HURT NOT WITH MIKE AROUND AND HE KEPT IT SO CLEAN. GLORIA WAS A SOCIAL BUTTERFLY MAKING SURE YOU FOUND THE MOVIE YO0U WERE LOOKING FOR. SHE KEPT A SENSE OF HUMOR IN SITUATIONS THAT COULD OTHERWISE BE ACKWARD. SURE DO MISS THE FUN.

Moco
Moco on August 6, 2009 at 6:22 pm

Tylergal: ~ Girl, that was too funny. I will be certain not to make a trip there…especially at night. Although, back in the late ‘70s and '80s I think almost all of the drive-ins were homosexual dens, even if they were showing a Disney film. You could be there watching a double-bill of “Caddyshack” and “Rabbit Test”, then see a few other things you didn’t ask for.

“Lock your doors and don’t look anyone in the face.” TELL ME ABOUT IT!

Michael
Michael on March 19, 2008 at 2:16 pm

I used to go hear one year I was in High School in East Texas. We used to sneak friends in along what I think was the Eastern edge of the drivein.

longislandmovies
longislandmovies on November 4, 2007 at 10:42 pm

KEN THAT IS AN OLD SIGN THEY HAVE A NEWER SIGN AS OF 2007

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on October 17, 2007 at 4:42 pm

“Adult movies” says it all. Patrons probably aren’t that interested in the movie, anyway.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on October 17, 2007 at 3:24 pm

I think this may be the marquee for the Apache:
http://tinyurl.com/ysqexc

longislandmovies
longislandmovies on July 27, 2006 at 5:03 pm

tyler needs a real drive in

longislandmovies
longislandmovies on June 18, 2006 at 2:38 pm

this opened in the 60s

e05079
e05079 on June 15, 2006 at 6:43 am

I went to this drive-in in 1981 or 82. I had no idea it was only 2 or 3 years old at that time. The projector bulb was so dim….you could barely see the movie. To make matters worse…..since it was located in the woods….the fog would roll in and make the screen even harder to see. Not that anyone was really watching the movie anyway. I went to this drive-in with some college roomates to see what this place was all about. What an adventure!

DriveInTheatre2001
DriveInTheatre2001 on July 17, 2005 at 7:01 pm

I was told that this was opened as a Rated X Theatre. ALTHO, it was originally across town and it was a “Regular” theatre Then.. The Fiesta in El Paso Opened as a Rated X theatre as well..

Randy Carlisle
Photographically Preserving Dallas History 1 Building @ A Time

longislandmovies
longislandmovies on June 29, 2005 at 3:27 am

went to see this theater during the day , top right piece of screen is missing and thats how they run it.Area is clean neon APACHE all working – pylon looks as if its new.

longislandmovies
longislandmovies on April 27, 2005 at 12:38 pm

was this drive -in always an x rated theater??

longislandmovies
longislandmovies on April 25, 2005 at 9:08 am

did this ever show reg, movies

rivest266
rivest266 on January 4, 2005 at 8:43 am

This Drive-in and the Fiesta drive-in near El Paso TX, are the only adult drive-ins left.

scottfavareille
scottfavareille on December 4, 2004 at 10:46 am

Interesting article. I always wondered how a video projection system can be seen outdoors over some distance.

Has this drive-in always been an XXX drive-in?