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 15 comments)

Drive-In 54
Drive-In 54 on March 29, 2012 at 8:37 am

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 9:01 am

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 3:53 pm

New screen tower is up!!

KenLayton
KenLayton on May 8, 2014 at 5:03 pm

That is good news!

Chris1982
Chris1982 on October 2, 2014 at 12:13 am

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

MichaelKilgore
MichaelKilgore on August 11, 2017 at 10:59 pm

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
davidcoppock on August 12, 2017 at 1:08 am

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

Earl64
Earl64 on September 3, 2019 at 7:17 pm

To MichiganDriveins.com The Starlite Drive in Marquee was moved to the Parkside (Sundance Kid Drive In) When the Starlite was closed and torn Down. Ed Searles who owned both drive ins had it moved to his Parkside Drive In and had the “Star and Lite” changed to “Park and Side”. Parkside originally had a smaller marquee located on the bottom front of the screen in front and we continued using that for coming attractions etc. for years until it was taken down later on. Also Mike Kilgore, the capacity of the drive in was 840 plus not 500 as listed in your facts book. I was company supervisor for Armstrong Theaters and managed Parkside when we added the second screen. I have pictures somewhere of the second screen and the truck body used for back projection booth before it was installed in back of theater, plus pictures of the marquee when we had Mr No Leggs (Ted Volrath) appearing in person for his movie. Stupidly I have photos of him chopping a potato off my neck with a sword…LOL

Earl64
Earl64 on September 3, 2019 at 7:32 pm

Additionally to my above comment, Jack Armstrong operated Parkside, Starlite, Telegraph, Jesse James, Eastside drive Ins from the early 60’s as well as Princess, Esquire, Valentine, Maumee indoor as well as a few other theaters in the area. Parkside and Telegraph were “PT Theaters Inc” DBA “Armstrong Circuit Inc.” I used to deliver concession supplies to all our theaters along with Bill Herring who was General Manager of Concessions for Armstrong Circuit.

Drive-In 54
Drive-In 54 on September 3, 2019 at 8:48 pm

Hey Earl64 thanks for update on the marquee’s. I did not know that. But I did wonder why the marquee at the Parkside looked good but it looked funny also. I tell people to becareful using theatre catalogs and MPA’s in theatre reseach.

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