81 Drive-In

7320 N. 2820 Road,
Duncan, OK 73533

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Styles: Rustic

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81 Drive-In

Located on Route 81 between Comanche & Duncan. The 81 Drive-In was opened around 1953 by George M. Jennings. Though closed for a long while, a little elbow grease could have the old 81 Drive-In ready for business in no time. This theatre was small, with a somewhat small screen, but obviously it served as a pleasant setting in which one could watch a double feature under the stars. It was still open in 1961. It was destroyed by a tornado in February 1975.

Contributed by Jeff Chapman

Recent comments (view all 8 comments)

Drover on June 2, 2011 at 10:23 am

Picture’s all wrong. The theater is located between Duncan and Comanche….. Fixed it. :D

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on January 17, 2012 at 1:35 pm

Good old carbon arc,good old 35mm ,progress stinks,great picture,and I MEAN IT.

Buck Wilson
Buck Wilson on February 10, 2014 at 12:14 pm

GREAT pics. Love it.

Jay Harvey
Jay Harvey on February 10, 2014 at 3:49 pm

Some of the best photos I’ve seen on here!

MichaelKilgore on September 11, 2021 at 8:35 pm

Boxoffice, March 10, 1975: (Oklahoma City notes) “The 81 Drive-In in Comanche was practically leveled by a tornado last month”

MichaelKilgore on October 4, 2021 at 7:20 pm

Boxoffice, Oct. 23, 1961: “George M. Jennings recently won a district court judgment for $9,015 against the D-X Sunray Oil Co. for loss of business suffered by Jennings' 81 Drive-In south of Duncan from Dec. 15, 1958, through May 1, 1961, during which time the DX refinery near the airer neglected to replace a stack muffler. The resulting loud noise discouraged patronage at the drive-in, Jennings alleged.”

Ciganka on April 9, 2022 at 7:59 am

It was the screen tower that was leveled, and it was replaced. Last I saw, it was still in good condition. Yes, Grandad not only took Sunray to court, but if they got loud, he would call over there and ask them if they wanted to go another round, LOL.

Kenmore on April 9, 2022 at 9:59 am

A closer address is 7320 N 2820 Rd, Duncan, Oklahoma.

That address puts it right at the entrance.

As of October 2021, the screen and concession stand/projector booth (minus the roof) are still standing. The marquee was torn down sometime after 2013.

There is some type of smaller structure south of the entrance that looks like a big dumpster. However, it appears in a 1960 aerial and continues to occupy that spot to the present day.


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