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Relive the ’50s with a movie and meal

By Vivian Nguyen

Published 3:51 PDT, Tue July 30, 2019

The ’50s have returned to Richmond, with classic outdoor movie nights making a comeback at Lansdowne Centre.

The ’50s have returned to Richmond, with classic outdoor movie nights making a comeback at Lansdowne Centre.

The popularity of drive-in movies peaked in the 1950s as parents saw it as good family-friendly entertainment, and youth as an ideal date. The flexibility and attractions of drive-ins created more buzz than indoor theatres as well, since locations included picnic tables, the ability to freely take care of children, and to smoke.

However, outdoor movies began to fade by the 1970s as coloured tv, video rentals and the introduction of the VCR began to take charge. Today, there remains only about 300 such drive-in theatres in North America.

Fortunately, in recent years, a thirst for nostalgia and old-school entertainment has emerged. With that, drive-in outdoor movies, such as at Lansdowne Centre, are making a comeback.

This is the fifth year Lansdowne Centre has hosted its summer movie series; a free community event that provides parking for drive-in vehicles, as well as space for those attending on foot.

“What sets Lansdowne outdoor movies apart from other outdoor movie locations is that it is totally free, and it is a drive-in” says Bronwyn Bailey, the marketing director at Landsdowne Centre.

She also states that “the only other drive-in besides Lansdowne is in Abbotsford’s Twilight Drive-In Theatre.” 

To fulfill your night-time experience, order dinner from a large selection of food from the likes of Thai Express, U-Grill, and more; vendors that can all be found in the Lansdowne food court. Note that Freshslice Pizza can also deliver pizza to the parking lot at the movie.

Movies are shown every Wednesday in July and August, all pre-determined by public vote. Categories vary widely; everything suitable from a fun girls night out to romantic date night to family time.

While popular movies from the ’50s include "Singin’ in the Rain", "Cinderella" and "Sunset Boulevard", some movie titles playing this summer at Lansdowne are "Aquaman", "Shazam" and "Detective Pikachu"; modern day movie titles definitely sound more adventurous than those ’50s black-and-white film.

Bailey says if you’re attending any of the Lansdowne movie nights, be sure to claim your parking or lawn chair spot by 6 p.m. She adds that it is first come, first serve.

The weekly movies start during sunset, around 9 p.m.

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