Friday, July 12, 2013

The Boulevard Drive-In

There are portals in time scattered all across the country.  An abandoned gas station in New Mexico or part of the original nine foot wide alignment on Route 66.  Tail fins of a Buick Special poking out underneath an oily canvas tarp.  An original roadside diner serving malts and butterscotch milkshakes, playing Nat King Cole or Roy Orbison on the jukebox.  And my recent favorite, drive in theaters.       

First opened in the early 1950's, the Boulevard Drive-In has been a landmark on Merriam Road in Kansas City, KS for over 60 years.  It's survived a number of tough times, including the slow decline of the area and for drive in theaters in general.  Like many drive ins, part of its survival can be attributed to its reliance on swap & shop income.  But I think a lot of it comes from the quality of experience it offers, both in the digital audio and projection equipment, cleanliness, and great atmosphere.  

Last weekend the family saw Monsters University.  It was a perfect night.  The weather was warm but not thick with the normal July humidity.  We had the tailgate open on the Chevrolet, blankets and pillows spread out for the kids.  My wife and I sat in chairs with a cooler of drinks and watched the sun set behind the trees.  Except for the cars in the lot, it could have been 1955 instead of 2013, or any year in between.  

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