Thomas, Drive-Ins and Monsters University

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First off, let me start by saying you need to be prepared – especially if you are bringing kids with you. You are likely to be away from home for a minimum of 5 hours, so pack for it! Here’s a list of what we did/brought to make sure that we all enjoyed the evening and got the most out of our drive-in experience…mendon-twin-drive-in-screen-1

  • Get there early. Drive-in shows that feature new movies (especially double-features) will sell out quickly. Our show was scheduled to start around 9pm, and at 6:30, they were almost full.
  • Check the weather before you leave home! Drive-in movies are rain-or-shine, so bring umbrellas just in case!
  • Bring stuff to keep the kiddos occupied while you wait for the movie to start. The people next to us brought balls to play catch and a Frisbee; we brought bubbles, punching balloons, silly putty, and my iPad.
  • It will get chilly. We dressed in pants and shirts with socks and sneakers, and we brought sweatshirts. Even though this warmed us considerably, we still needed the blankets we brought.
  • The kids should be comfortable. These movies start very late – there were tons of kids in their PJs, and we brought sleeping bags and camping pillows so the kids could sleep if they wanted to.
  • mendon-twin-drive-in-snack-barSave money! Pack up a cooler with favorite drinks and snacks so you don’t spend a fortune on food. We ended up spending around $15 on ice cream, drinks and snacks more because it’s part of the fun than anything.
  • Bring a portable radio. Unless you’re 100% sure that you want to spend the entire evening sitting inside your vehicle, a portable radio makes the movie all the more enjoyable.
  • Make sure you’ll be comfortable. We brought 4 folding lawn chairs, but I think next time we’re going to steal the idea of our neighbor’s – they filled the bed of their pickup with TONS of pillows and blankets – talk about comfy!
  • Bring as many flashlights as you have kids. Drive-ins get dark, and you’re outdoors – a kid who needs to go potty will be less freaked out by the dark if they can carry a flashlight (even if they don’t need it). A flashlight also helps you avoid ticking off those parked behind you by turning on the inside light of your car so you can search for something.
  • Bring bug-spray. Drive-ins are almost always surrounded by trees so they don’t give the neighbors a free viewing of all thier movies, and bugs LOVE trees!
  • Bring a small first-aid kit. Drive-ins are one of the few public places where it’s okay to let your kids run around. Bring some supplies in case of scraped knees.
  • And not completely necessary, but a good idea is to bring jumper cables. This drive-in will jump-start your car for you should the battery die, but if you don’t want to wait until after intermission, having your own could come in handy.

I know it sounds like a lot of work just to go see a movie, but like I said earlier, a drive-in movie isn’t just a movie – it’s a whole experience, so the time you spend preparing and arriving early are worth it!



This was NOT a paid post – all these activities and sites mentioned above just contributed to one of the best family weekends we’ve had in a long time, so I wanted to help spread the love. 😉


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