Vintage cars parked at the Southington Drive-In in Southington on Friday July 22, 2011. Prior to "American Graffiti" being shown at the drive-in, vintage cars were on display for the audience to check out. Southington Drive-In has movies playing every Saturday night through September 3, 2011. (Matt Andrew/ Record-Journal)
May 2, 2014 08:26AM
By Farrah Duffany
SOUTHINGTON — A new candy concession stand, more Disney movies, and an earlier start date are just a couple of changes people can look forward to for the town drive-in’s 2014 season, which starts next month.
More surrounding towns have also been added to the drive-in’s list for “neighbor nights,” which is one specific night for people from other areas to attend a movie for the Southington resident price. A total of 14 towns have their own neighbor night.
The 2014 lineup for the town-owned drive-in was recently announced with 14 different movies that will be shown throughout the summer.
This year the season is starting a week early on June 7 and ending a week later on Sept. 6, said Dawn Miceli, a member of the Southington Drive-in Committee. The committee used Facebook to gather opinions and take suggestions on how to improve the season. Starting the season earlier was part of the results as well as adding more family movies.
“We came to the conclusion we wanted to show more family movies. It’s really what works for our particular movie venue,” Miceli said. “We know this year we weren’t trying to do a scary movie through the summer or old-time Elvis movies.”
Through the drive-in’s Facebook page, Miceli said there was a large demand for more family movies. Every year Miceli said she reaches out to the civic groups that help run the operation and citizens to see what movies they would like to see and make selections based on the most popular requests.
Fourteen civic groups are helping to operate the drive-in this season and it acts as a fundraiser where the proceeds go back to the groups.
Every year the civic groups also try to host activities and events before the movies begin at sunset.
The weekend of Aug. 8 and 9, the movies “Meatballs” will show Friday and “Stripes” on Saturday which may be a weekend to honor the actor and comedian Bill Murray, said Mike Riccio, a member of the drive-in committee. The volunteer fire companies one and two will have fire trucks for children to climb in and their fire dog, Sparky, at their movie on June 28.
The committee is also working with the Orange County Choppers to have a bike rally on one weekend in the fall that could involve a two hour bike ride around central Connecticut before the movie begins.
“We haven’t gotten the final go ahead yet, but we’re in the talking stages,” Riccio said.
The drive-in will show 14 movies starting June 7 through Sept. 6.
The movies that will be shown are: “Ice Age,” “Tangled,” “The Muppet Movie,” “Wall-E,” “Frozen,” “Stand By Me,” “Harry and the Hendersons,” “Meatballs,” “Stripes,” “Superman,” “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles,” “The Lion King,” and “ET.” The Halloween Festival will be held on Oct. 25 and the movie has yet to be decided.
Tickets for Southington residents are $10 a car, nonresidents $15 and walk-ins $2 each. Towns for “neighbor nights” include New Britain, Cheshire, Meriden, Wolcott, Waterbury, Cromwell, Plainville, Newington, Farmington, North Haven, Middletown, and Wallingford.
“We’re looking forward to yet another season,” Miceli said. “We’re really thankful we have so many civic groups that want to participate in this community gem.”