Last updated 9/4/06. New pics start on page 6
The Ultimate Pontiac GTO Picture Site
by Sean Mattingly.
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CLICK-> [an error occurred while processing this directive] This place was full of cars, which is a great thing to see. Can you spot the GTO? Behind me, there was a couple in a minivan that said they liked the car. It's fun to talk to the crowd at a place like this. Everyone is friendly. I was wearing my Carousel Red "The Judge" t-shirt on this night. A young girl standing with her friends asked me "Are you a judge?". Ummm, no. I am not The Judge.
CLICK-> [an error occurred while processing this directive] Kids play Nerf football on the lawn in front of the giant screen at the Auburn-Garrett drive-in theatre. The sky looks beautiful on this May evening as cars pull into their places. I did not see any speakers in this facility. They seem to broadcast the movie sound on FM radio only.
CLICK-> [an error occurred while processing this directive] The 2nd feature is over. The cars are moving out. It is time to go home. This is the night shot from my Sony Cyber-Shot digital camera. It was set on "night" mode for a long exposure and you can see the blur of the Poseidon credits rolling up the screen.
CLICK-> [an error occurred while processing this directive] Warp Speed is a beautiful thing on Interstate 69 as the GTO heads for home. I was driving through the interchanges of Fort Wayne, Indiana with no traffic in the way.
CLICK-> [an error occurred while processing this directive] Sunset Drive-In (Hartford, Michigan): The sixth stop on the tour was the Sunset Drive-In of Hartford, Michigan on May 27, 2006. This is a small 300-car place just west of a small town. I like to visit operating drive-ins not for a nostalgic kick, but for what they are in the present tense. I like to enjoy a good movie in an outdoor setting. I also like the whole package a drive-in can present to the patron. If there's some razzle-dazzle and some good showmanship, that's a bonus. But this sign is simple and unsophisticated, an indicator of what is inside this facility which was built in 1948.
CLICK-> [an error occurred while processing this directive] We were welcomed by some nice kids in the ticket booth. The Sunset Drive-In had many employees on hand, all wearing new matching shirts.
CLICK-> [an error occurred while processing this directive] An overall view of the grounds as we drove in on a beautiful Saturday night. Earlier in the day, we were showing dogs east of here at the Kalamazoo fairgrounds, so it was nice to spend some time away from the busy fairgrounds.
CLICK-> [an error occurred while processing this directive] I peeked into the projection room to see their neatly-constructed setup. They have dual projectors which are ready for the evening's entertainment. The projection quality at this small venue looked good. The Sunset Drive-In is the second oldest operating outdoor theater in the state of Michigan. If you look through the left window, you can see the kids on their playground. Many drive-ins have removed their playgrounds for insurance and maintenance reasons. I like to see a place that still has something for the kids to do before showtime.
CLICK-> [an error occurred while processing this directive] Walking around to the outside of the building, I looked into an observation window next to the projector window at the Sunset Drive-In.
CLICK-> [an error occurred while processing this directive] The snack bar area was clean and well-furnished. Mmm! My choice was nachos with chili. The sandwiches at The Sunset Drive-In are pre-made so you can grab one and go. I've found that some places make sandwiches ahead of time, and others make them to order. The order-takers at this counter were fast.
CLICK-> [an error occurred while processing this directive] Near sunset, they turned on the lights above the screen. Most places will start the trailers and the main feature soon after sunset. It was odd how there was a long 40-minute delay while we waited and waited on the show to start well after dark. We felt like these theater owners were wasting our time, sitting in a row with people flashing their lights, also impatient for the show to start. They also don't undertand that they should show the "family" movie first so the kids can enjoy it before going to sleep. Any other theater would have showed "Benchwarmers" first, then "The DaVinci Code" as the 2nd feature.
CLICK-> [an error occurred while processing this directive] A long exposure night view of the snack bar building at the Sunset Drive-In near Hartford, Michigan. Because of a late start, the first movie didn't end until after midnight, then we started the car and bolted. In "The DaVinci Code", Tom Hanks is interpreting historical symbols and codes and clues to solve a mystery of the Holy Grail. It's a complicated story to follow. Mary Ann (call her Mrs. UltimateGTO.com) enjoyed following the twists and turns of the storyline. Rating this theater on a five star scale, I'd give them only 3 stars for overall appearance/appeal, 4 stars for the snack bar, 5 stars for projection quality & sound, 5 stars for their prices, and only 1 star for their showmanship.
CLICK-> [an error occurred while processing this directive] Georgetown Drive-In (Georgetown, Indiana): On July 12th, 2006 during the GTO National convention in Louisville, Kentucky we took a short 27 mile drive to the nearby Georgetown, Indiana Drive-in. This was a very cool drive-in with a landmark in front. Check out the 1957 Chevy on the sign. The car is trimmed in neon. On this 2006 Drive-In Tour I have seen some unique things. It has been a nice change from indoor theaters where every screening room is the same.
CLICK-> [an error occurred while processing this directive] The 1957 Chevy on the sign was a real one alright. Yes, this Drive-In is really open all seven nights of the week. The sign promotes "Pirates of the Caribbean - Dead Man's Chest" and Pixar's "Cars" showing on screen #1. Showing on screen #2 is "Click" and "Superman Returns". There is a GTO driving down the driveway toward the ticket window.
CLICK-> [an error occurred while processing this directive] Here we are entering the theater. That's the friendly owner/operator Billy Powell taking the money at the front gate. We arrived early, hoping several other GTOs would arrive. Rain was threatening to dampen the evening, keeping the number of cars down. Oh well - More popcorn for us!
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