Warwick Drive-In reopens this weekend with $300,000 worth of new digital equipment
WARWICK — The Warwick Drive-In Movie Theater, which normally closes during the winter, will reopen this weekend with the latest films and new digital systems offering a clearer and brighter image.
Warwick is one of a dwindling number of communities that still offers the unique experience of the drive-in- movie theater. But many of the 366 drive-ins throughout the country that were still in operation may not be open for the 2014 season.
Early last year Hollywood signaled that it would stop distributing 35-millimeter film prints to all U.S. theaters by December.
The vast majority of indoor theaters had already converted to digital projectors but because of the heavy expense per screen, most drive-ins, especially independent rural and often family owned enterprises, had not.
A $300,000 investment to upgrade
Warwick Drive-In owners Beth and Ernest Wilson, however, decided to save their family-owned and family-run business and preserve the only nearby movie theater for local residents.
"Throughout the decades the Warwick Drive-In has always maintained the latest technology including the last weekend of the 2013 season when the theater went digital," said Beth Wilson. "The cost was very high, approximately $300,000, but we wanted to give our customers the full enjoyment of the movie. Our moviegoers will notice that the picture is a lot clearer and seems to come right off the screen."
Despite the cost of converting to the new system, the theater has not raised the price of admission for adults, senior and children.
"We invite you to come and enjoy the show under the stars and see how amazing this new system is," said Wilson.
Called a unique experience
Located at 5 Warwick Turnpike just behind ShopRite Plaza, the Warwick Drive-In provides a unique experience for visitors from throughout the Metropolitan area.
It was recently singled out as a major attraction in the StyleCaster media group's inclusion of the Town of Warwick as one of the 10 best weekend destinations in America.
The Drive-In features a park-like setting on 11 acres with home-cooked food and multiple screens offering a choice of first run features.
In addition to the new digital equipment the sound system is your own FM radio. And the parking arrangement provides an unobstructed view of each of the three huge screens.
The Warwick Drive-In is open March through October. Three screens and two showings allow for six different movies to be shown each night. A complete schedule of films and fees along with the snack-bar's extensive menu can be viewed at www.warwickdrivein.com
Schedule information is also available by calling 986-4440.
By Roger Gavan
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