Bengies Drive-In

3417 Eastern Boulevard,
Middle River, MD 21220

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Bengies Drive-In Theatre (Official)

Additional Info

Architects: Jack K. Vogel

Functions: Movies (First Run)

Phone Numbers: Box Office: 410.687.5627

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News About This Theater

Bengies Drive-In

Bengies Drive-In opened on June 6, 1956. The screen is 120 feet by 52 feet and is the biggest theatre screen remaining in the USA or North America. At opening it had a capacity for 1,000 cars. There was also an enclosed seating area for 60 walk-ins. The current capacity is for 750 cars.

Designed by architectural engineer Jack K. Vogal for the Vogal Theatre chain. He designed and built many drive-in’s in the North-east US and also built the first drive-in theatre in South America, the Auto-Cine Drive-In in Lima, Peru in around 1954.

He designed and built all three drive-in’s in the Vogal Circuit, the other two being:
The Dublin Drive-In in Dublin (Columbus) OH
Salem Drive-In, Salem, OH

He was the architect for:
Winter Drive-In, Wintersville, OH (still existing)
and the following which have been demolished:
Atlantic Drive-In, Atlantic City, NJ
Edmonson Drive-In, Baltimore, MD
Frontier Drive-In, Annapolis, MD
Beltsville Drive-In, Beltsville, MD

Contributed by Lost Memory, D. Edward Vogal

Recent comments (view all 19 comments)

Silicon Sam
Silicon Sam on June 15, 2010 at 12:29 am

Picture of the screen:

View link

Looks like a stiff wind could knock this thing down…..

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on March 16, 2011 at 5:16 pm

The owner of the BIG-MO Drive-in does the same thing at intermission,gets on and yaks and yaks and yaks.Give me a break,but the BIG-MO; it is a mom and pop operation.

Archie1959 on March 16, 2011 at 6:33 pm

How dare some one talk over a 3 Stooges short. Unless it had Joe in the short.

Tine263 on January 21, 2014 at 3:53 pm

I have some current photos of the outside of the theater on my blog, as well as some information! I agree with some of the posts though, I was not a fan of the commentary over the credits and film shorts.

Chris1982 on September 24, 2014 at 8:42 pm

The Bengies has made the conversion to digital projection.

MichaelKilgore on November 4, 2017 at 11:14 am

It’s strange that the summary here, at least partially written by “D. Edward Vogal”, spells that last name consistently with an A. Every other reference I can find, including CNN, the Baltimore Sun, his signature at the end of a lengthy complaint about the Baltimore Sun, and even the Whois record for – they all spell that name Vogel with an E.

FWIW, its first appearance in the International Motion Picture Almanac was the 1957 edition, in which it was listed in Middle River, spelled as Bengie’s, capacity 585, owner Frog Mortar Corp. That listing stayed the same through 1966.

During the period (at least 1969-76) when the IMPA didn’t include owners, it became Bengies (no apostrophe) in Baltimore, capacity 750. In 1978-88, the listing returned to Middle River, owner Vogel, capacity 600.

50sSNIPES on May 3, 2019 at 10:21 am

This Drive-In Is One Of The Survivors That Still Has The “Welcome To The Bengies Drive-In” Snipe From The 1950s Today.

dansdriveintheater on March 18, 2021 at 1:12 pm

@archie1959 true joe was the worst of the three stooges.

kennerado on August 27, 2021 at 10:05 pm

The opening date seems a bit iffy, however if that was correct then the opening films were “White Feather” and “The Warriors” (Errol Flynn).

MichaelKilgore on October 20, 2023 at 9:06 am

The April 6, 1957 issue of Boxoffice ran a three-page article on Bengies. It focused on architectural engineer Jack K. Vogel’s design, “a unique contribution to outdoor movies”, especially of the concession stand. It included plenty of diagrams and photos, including small photos of the box office and the then-humble marquee.

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