Monday, September 16, 2013

Vote by Text Vote87 at 444999 or at Project

In May 2012, I wrote about my favorite Drive-In movie Theater, and now we have an opportunity to save it.
Ginger, part of the owners family, wrote the following for Honda's Project Drive In


2303 Elk Valley Cross Road Crescent City, CA 95531 | Text Vote87 to 444999
Red’s Drive-In is located 3 miles North of Crescent City, Ca on Elk Valley Crossroads, Crescent City is on the beautiful Northern California Coast, approx 16 miles from the Oregon border. A few things that make our Drive-In unique, we are probably the cheapest Driven in at $10 a car load for 2 movies. We have mostly grass, the kids love to play before the show in the big field of grass in front of the screen. It’s not unusual to see kids playing ball all the way up to show time. We are the only Drive-In for 100s of miles. My In-laws had their first date their. Red was then a logger. Four kids and several decades later they ended up buying the theater, after running the Brooking Drive-in for 20 years.  I met my husband there, my mom also met my dad at the Drive-In. She was employed at a Drive-In when she was young in Arizona. We’ve been in the Drive-In business since 1959. This theater was build in 1952, the Thomas family took it over in 1981. They owned then Brookings Reds and Reds Crescent Drive-In. After going down to Cloverdale California and buy and falling a Drive-In screen there. They brought it back and put it up at Brookings Drive-In location. In that same year they fixed the screen and bought the Crescent location. Both screens blew down on Friday the 13th November of 1981. A freak storm with over 120 mph winds. Superstitious lets just say were not Friday the 13th fans. So with no screen, no insurance and most of his money tied up in the Drive-In. Red had a big decision to make. He could only afford to save one Drive-In. After careful consideration the Crescent City location was saved. Please help us save our theater one more time with your votes - Ginger

Project Drive-in explained

At the end of the year, the majority of American Drive-ins will face closure with the movie industry’s switch from film to digital. Upgrading to digital projection costs roughly $80,000.
We planned on saving 5 drive-ins, but with your help we will be able to help save 9. Here are 4 things you can do right now to help save even more. Let’s preserve this iconic part of American car culture.
Vote, Contribute, Pledge and Download

  From May to October, what we are doing on the weekend depends in large part on what is listed on the program taped to the kitchen window. If the double feature at Red's is on our list, we won't be heading out of town. The movies they get there are later in their season than the cinema in town, but at  $10 carload , no-one minds too much if it is movies that will be out on video the following week.

 Knowing that the Drive-in movie has opened again, allows me the freedom of really believing that Winter is over. I love this old relic just down the street from my house. 

That is $10 for a carload (up to 10 people) for a double feature
Projection booth on right, snack bar to your left

 The speakers don't work as well anymore as having your own radio and tuning in to 102.9 FM or 700 AM. The concession stand has popcorn, hot dogs and fresh hot pizza, "$1 a slice while they last," but at the funniest moments there is the interruption over the speakers, "The Snack Bar will be closing in 15 minutes"

 Ok, I've seen folding chairs and sleeping bags, people sitting on the roof of their car and the back of their truck, but this week there was a plaid sofa up toward the front of the drive - in theater, and a bunch of young people playing catch around it as they waited for the movie to begin. The picture isn't very good, but the situation had me smiling

 No, they don't have a captive audience like the cinema, so the prices stay reasonable. They know you can come to the drive-in with a car load of Pizza and candy and they can't stop you, so their candy and hot dogs and pizza by the slice comes at an honest price and with smiles for everyone.

 Waiting until dark to begin the movie and then showing a double feature has always made the employees and owners impatient to get the show going, so the previews begin before it is dark and if the first movie has a lot of dark scenes you miss some of the detail in the first half hour or so. Although they have been better at waiting until dark now that Project Drive-In is happening.

When the movies are family friendly the place really packs them in, like last weekend with
 The Double Feature of
 Monsters U, and Despicable Me

Remembering to take your foot off the brakes is more important drive-in etiquette than turning for cell phone off.

Last year a wind storm knocked a few panels of wood out of the Drive-in movie screen and the season was delayed for repairs. Tragedy, I tell you. 

Here the local kids sneak in through the bushes to watch from up front without paying. Before and between features there are games of frisbee or tag. There is underage drinking at times but also a lot of family fun. People used to gather on the grass beside their car but it was too easy for a late arrival to try to find an empty parking space and nearly park on a person in a lawn chair or sleeping bag. Now there is a white wooden railing and people on the lawn have to stay in front of it if they don't want to sit in their cars. 

The perimeter of the theater grounds are encouraged trees and blackberry vines, but if someone tries to park outside and watch for free from the wrong side of the fence, Red's sons have been known to broadcast such messages as, "Will the cheapskate in the green truck either come in and pay for the movie or leave.'
Projection booth on right, snack bar to your left

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Another September, Another Chance

I love September, especially when we're in it.
Willie Stargell 

We know that in September, we will wander through the warm winds of summer's wreckage. We will welcome summer's ghost.
Henry Rollins 

I also love September, and yet I find myself often depressed by it. As one who has lived 45 years on an American school schedule, I feel September as my true New Year. This is when I evaluate how the last year went and promise myself that I will change the things I didn't like and hold on to the things I loved.

After 45 year it becomes easy to see that doing that isn't easy. The resolutions each year sound a lot like the resolutions of the years before them.  So hope and depression mingle, like the perfection that is my home area in September, when the fruits are ripe and scenting the air and free for the taking. When windows hang open and the temperature both mid-day and mid-night is comfortable without air conditioning or heaters. Life is perfect but also tainted by the knowledge of how quickly things must change, and when they seem perfect, even a small change feels like a loss.

Yet This picture of my Son reminds me that the more things change, the more they stay the same.  As a toddler he wanted nothing more than to be on a boat with a line in the water. So when grandpa took him and his brother out, he was in his element, and now, when he thinks I'd  rather have him in college like his brother, 
he is a commercial fisherman with a lot of hard dangerous work and he is not always happy, not always content, but he is where he was born to be and he is true and loyal to who he is in a way that makes me proud of him.

 Wouldn't it be boring if everyone made the same choices?  If the world had one color, or one species or one religion or one dream?

I find my dreams and hopes in my family and my students and in the books I write and the books I read. I don't think my way is better than yours though, if you never want to have a child, or write a book, if exercise delights you, and you like to get physically tested, I love to hear your stories and watch you work out.

At 50 I have lost enough loved ones to know that the sadness I feel in September is the knowledge of things slipping through my fingers and away, no matter how tightly I grip.  I know my enjoyment of the vivid sunflower will be bittersweet for the knowledge of the grey rainy winter on the way. I know I play with the young dog, and already see him old and limping and grey muzzled now that I have had a series of wonderful dogs live out their life as my friend.

 But I can anticipate more than pain and loss. I also have lived long enough to know the death in the family, is followed by another birth, that the withered sunflower stalks drop the sees that volunteer next springs green shoots, and next Septembers glory.

So I have been thinking about what I have and what I have not done. I was going to make the bucket list of the things I wanted to visit, and do, and own, but while it is true, I want to see and do more, I'm not too concerned with owning THINGS anymore So this is what I really want for my resolutions

 I want to get rid of the clutter the way my neighbor has spent the summer removing the old junker trailer.

 I want to enjoy the gifts of life, like free blackberries
 and beautiful friends
 and bright