Enderby’s beloved outdoor theatre has drawn national acclaim.
The Starlight Drive-In comes in at No. 10 on Reader’s Digest’s list of the top-11 best drive-in theatres in the country.
“The Starlight Drive-In may be a recent addition to Canada’s drive-in roster, but what it lacks in history, it more than makes up for in size,” wrote Rosie Long Decter of readersdigest.ca. “Measuring 15 metres tall and 36 metres wide, the Starlight’s drive-in screen is the largest in North America.”
Building the theatre was a passion project for founder Terry Jones, who had faith back in 1996 that drive-ins were due for a renaissance. Jones told a media outlet at the time of construction, “We think it’s come full circle… People are tired of just watching videos.”
Barring unforeseen circumstances, the Starlight will celebrate its 25th anniversary in 2021.
The drive-in has hosted grad celebrations while using its big screen, and there have been marriage proposals that have popped up as well.
The theatre adjusted a number of its operations to meet all government regulations around COVID-19 protocols in 2020, such as social distancing, and went to online ticket sales only. Theatre capacity was slashed by 50 per cent to allow each car to have 20 feet of parking space.
The theatre will show Sponge Bob: Sponge on the Run and Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade Sunday, Aug. 30, starting at 7:45 p.m. Gates and concession open at 6:45 p.m.
The drive-in will be closed Aug. 31 to Sept. 2, with its final weekend of the season tentatively set for Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 4-6. Dates are subject to change due to COVID without notice.
The No. 1 drive-in according to Reader’s Digest is the Stardust Drive-In, located in Newmarket, Ont., about an hour north of Toronto. It was built in 1952 and, according to the writer, “still has its original look and feel, and hosted generations of Canadian movie lovers – and even movie stars, including John Candy and Jim Carrey.”