Date nights during quarantine have been so tough! I have been craving a night out, but finding things we can do that are socially distanced isn’t easy. Drive-in movies were the perfect solution- I got the idea when I heard that Georgia was reopening movie theaters, and I remembered hearing about the Starlight! I was so excited to learn that it reopened in the last week of April (although the snack bar is still closed).
I decided to surprise Ryan with the idea, and told him to pick me up on Friday night around 7PM with takeout- I gave him the address and told him to drive! He had no clue where he was driving to- it was so fun to see the look on his face when he saw the sign! I filmed the drive and surprise in case you missed it on my Instagram stories- it is saved in the 2020 part two highlight.
The Starlight is a classic drive-in theater with multiple movie screens, and the weekend shows are at 9PM for the first viewing (I loved the late time since I usually work late!). They recommend that you get there early- we showed up around 7:30PM and there were already a few cars in the lot. I had read reviews to get there around two hours early, and I was a little worried it would be extra crowded because there are so few options for entertainment right now. We probably could’ve waited until 8PM or so, but we enjoyed chatting in the car and I took the chance to snap a few photos.
How early you want to show up really depends on your preference and car size. I don’t have the best eyesight and we have a smaller car, so I didn’t want to risk being in the back. I would come at least an hour early, and gauge it depending on where you want to park and the size of your car- the lot is sloped down towards the screen, and the spots have “bumps” so you are higher up, but we did have to move Ry’s Camry when a huge SUV parked in front of us (they apologized and offered to move after they realized they blocked us, haha). Technically, the Starlight asks that bigger cars park in the back, but no one really seemed to be following that rule.
The prices for tickets at the Starlight are $10 for ages 10+, and $1 for children- I think it was the cheapest movie I had ever seen! The ticket gets you two movies on the same screen- that would’ve been really late so we went home because we were tired, but maybe one time we will try to do both. I was just happy to not be spending $40 on a movie, haha.
I also loved that we could bring our own food (I usually bring my Longchamp and sneak food in to movies, haha). I brought leftover Easter jelly beans, and had Ryan bring us Pad Thai for dinner because I wanted to eat something that would still be good once it got cold. We had to drive for a few minutes out of the city to get there, and I didn’t really end up eating it until the movie started. I think next time we might try picking up takeout from somewhere closer to the drive-in and try a pizza!
In case you’ve never been to a drive-in, you keep your car on with the battery and listen to the movie on the radio. The sound was crystal clear, and we didn’t have any issues. But, be sure you have a full tank of gas in case you need to run your car without the lights on to charge your battery. (The Starlight does have jumps just in case, but we didn’t have any issues keeping the car on.) It was so nice outside that a lot of people were sitting in lawn chairs- we might try that as it gets warmer and buy a portable radio, too.
We saw Knives Out– I had no idea what it was about, and was a little worried Ryan had seen it (he manages to see every new movie right when it comes out, I swear!). He hadn’t seem it yet but had wanted to- score!
It was a classic murder mystery that was both intriguing and heartwarming- it was so good! I was a little worried it would be gory or scary (I pass out when I see blood and get nightmares from scary movies) but it was neither. I loved watching it and looking for clues, and watching it with Ryan was really fun because he managed to unravel the entire mystery with his police background! I won’t give everything away, but let’s just say that with the twists it was pretty impressive that he solved the whole story about halfway through the movie.
Ry and I loved our date at the Starlight- it was a cheap date and such a great way to get out of the house. I’m usually not even a huge fan of movies because I like to talk (sorry Ry!) and I think regular theaters are too expensive, especially considering I have my own popcorn machine and a 55 inch TV at home. For me, the drive-in was a total game changer- it was reasonably priced, and a total escape from reality right now, which is what going to the movies is really all about. Quarantine or no quarantine- we will definitely be back! I don’t know if I’ll ever go to a regular theater again, haha!