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Drive-in movie night kicks off summer

Summer arrived June 21, and my husband and I kicked off the season by going somewhere in Franklin County I hadn’t been before: the King Drive-In.

This destination wasn’t even on my Franklin County 2019 bucket list. Why on earth wasn’t it?

Let me tell you, if you haven’t been to the drive-in, you’re missing an experience. There is just something so nostalgic somehow about pulling into an outdoor spot, loading up on some greasy good and watching a good flick.

The drive-in theater in the town where I went to high school has gone through its spells of being in operation and being closed down, so I love that the King Drive-In has been open for so many years. It’s a real tribute to our community’s dedication to supporting local businesses and entertainment options.

We rolled through the main gate about a quarter to 8 p.m. Friday night, and the field splayed out in front of the outdoor movie screen was already filling with families excited for “Toy Story 4.” The show wasn’t set to begin until closer to 8:30 p.m., but I knew we should have gotten there earlier. Nevertheless, we found ourselves in a pretty good spot caddy-corner to the concession stand and headed to choose our selection of movie treats.

The air inside was thick with the smell of popcorn butter and the heat of the kitchen, from which hamburgers, hotdogs and chili cheese fries were calling our name.

Armed with two cheeseburgers, a water (for him) and a Reese’s and diet Coke (for me) we headed back to the car to run the A/C until closer to movie time. We both enjoyed our dinner, and the prices weren’t bad either. I had to admit I was surprised; it’s the kind of place you expect to be price gouged, but I everything was reasonable.

Christopher went back for popcorn and made it back to the car just as the previews were starting. Around us the field had finished filling, with people lounging in their hatchbacks, kicked back in lawn chairs in their truck beds or, like us, chilling in the front seat.

Lights off, windows down, radio up – it was time for a night at the movies under the stars.

It was a little warm for hubby, but other than that, it was the perfect night. Lightning flashed somewhere in the distance as Andy and Buzz Lightyear tried to navigate their way through another toy disaster, but the ominous weather never made good on its threat. We laughed like kids at the hilarious hijinks Pixar dreamed up for the latest installment of Toy Story, and we genuinely enjoyed our evening.

Every week King Drive-In shares its line-up for the week in our newspaper, and every week I think, “That would be fun. We should do that.”

I’m really glad we finally did.

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