Sundance Kid Drive-In

4550 Navarre Avenue,
Oregon, OH 43616

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Sundance Kid Drive-In

The Parkside Drive-In opened on April 27, 1949, featuring “It Had To Be You” starring Ginger Rogers and Cornel Wilde. The second feature playing that evening was “Key Witness”. The drive-in got its name from being located across from Pearson Metropark in Oregon, OH. It opened as a single screen with a 622-car capacity. It was owned by Jim Dempsey who also owned the Telegraph Drive-In.

Ray Searles purchased the Parkside Drive-In and Telegraph Drive-In from Jim Dempsey. Searles built the Star-Lite Drive-In in Sylvania, Ohio, and also operated the Princess Theatre in Toldeo, Ohio. After his death in 1960, his sons Dan & Edward, took ownership of the theatres. The sons also handled the other family businesses which included a greenhouse and a chain of coin-op laundry and dry cleaning stores.

In 1979 a second screen tower was added to the Parkside Drive-In. The Parkside Drive-In was part of the Co-Operative Theatres of Ohio chain and the Jack Armstrong Circuit, until the Great Eastern Theatre Co. took over management of the drive-in.

In 1987 it was renamed Sundance Kid Drive-In. After 63 years of showing movies, the Sundance Kid Drive-In is still going strong. Originally there were eight drive-in theatres in the Toledo area. The Sundance Kid Drive-In is the last one operating in the area and still screens first-run movies on its twin screens.

Contributed by Lost Memory, Randy Studer

Recent comments (view all 12 comments) on January 2, 2011 at 2:56 pm

It’s a shame they replaced that beautiful original marquee with an unattractive plastic sign. The Starlite on the other side of Toledo had a very similar marquee, check it out here. on January 25, 2011 at 12:36 am

The Parkside Drive-In actually opened 4/27/49. It’s second screen opened in July 1978, and it was renamed the Sundance Kid in 1987. It was advertised alongside the Butch Cassidy Drive-In with similar ads, so I’m assuming they were under the same ownership.

Drive-In 54
Drive-In 54 on March 29, 2012 at 1:37 pm

Just updated with some Toledo Blade movie section ad’s and pictures of the various marquee’s over the years.

Drive-In 54
Drive-In 54 on November 23, 2013 at 2:01 pm

The Sundance lost it’s main screen tower during a tornado on November 17, 2013. It is the original screen tower that was put in 1949. Great Eastern Theatres is planning to replace it.

Drive-In 54
Drive-In 54 on May 8, 2014 at 8:53 pm

New screen tower is up!!

KenLayton on May 8, 2014 at 10:03 pm

That is good news!

Chris1982 on October 2, 2014 at 5:13 am

According to Great Eastern this drive-in has been converted to digital projection.

MichaelKilgore on August 12, 2017 at 3:59 am

Data dump on the Parkside from my Theatre Catalogs and Motion Picture Almanacs. Note that every source listed it in Toledo.

TC 1949-50: Exec: J. Dempsey, capacity 800.

TC 1952-56: J. Dempsey and Cooperative Ths. of Ohio, 622.

MPA 1953-59: Coop. Theatres, Ohio, 500.

MPA 1963: J. Armstrong, 500.

MPA 1969-76: 500.

MPA 1982: Armstrong, 500. (If the second screen was up, it didn’t notice)

MPA 1984-88: “Parkside 1 & 2”, Armstrong.

davidcoppock on August 12, 2017 at 6:08 am

Did it ever screen the movie Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid?

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