Ulmerton Drive-In

6060 Ulmerton Road,
Clearwater, FL 33760

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Additional Info

Previous Names: Palm Drive-In

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Ulmerton Drive-In

The Palm Drive-In opened on December 18, 1953 with “Gentlemen Prefer Blonds” and “Pony Soldier”. It was Pinellas County’s only African-American drive-in. The Palm Drive-In was conceived for black audiences, but switched to white audiences before it opened, once the owner learned that negro drive-ins rarely turned a profit. For whatever reason, the Palm Drive-In was switched back to being a black theatre.

It apparently closed for a brief time, but reopened in 1958, at which point it was called the Ulmerton Drive-In. It doesn’t seem to have survived past 1960 or 1961.

One newspaper article states that the theatre was on Ulmerton Road near 49th Street, while other sources state that it was closer to the US 19/Ulmerton intersection. Either way, the theatre is long gone and nothing remains.

Contributed by Andy

Recent comments (view all 7 comments)

rivest266 on November 19, 2011 at 12:15 pm

December 18th, 1953 grand opening ad had been posted here.

Drive-In 54
Drive-In 54 on October 25, 2012 at 5:54 am

Uploaded TOPO from 1957

jwmovies on December 26, 2012 at 12:15 pm

Approx. address for this drive-in was 6060 Ulmerton Road, Clearwater, FL 33760.


larsloose on January 4, 2013 at 9:03 pm

Boy, does that bring back childhood memories. My grandparents and uncle were the owners of this drive-in until its demise in 1960. Spent many a night watching movies there, hanging out at the concession stand and driving with my dad when he ran the mosquito fogger around theater at intermission-did’t know about the environmental and health hazards back then.

MichaelKilgore on April 30, 2022 at 1:56 pm

The 1955-56 Theatre Catalog included the Palm under Largo, owner H. J. Knight, capacity 400 cars.

Boxoffice, Aug. 20, 1955: “George E. Smith is the new owner of the Palm Drive-In. He purchased it from H. J. Knight.”

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