A large portion of people alive today have never even heard of the drive-in theater concept, let alone experienced the thrill of eating popcorn in a dark car while the movie plays on a building-sized screen outside your front window. Many of us here at Poconos Mountain Rentals remember our drive-in days with fondness, especially since those days occurred just a week or so ago! The Mahoning Drive-In Theater is alive and well and located just a short distance from your summer escape, offering Friday night fun that often goes into the weekend. Isn’t it time we showed the new generation the nostalgic appeal of a night at the drive-in?
Constructed in 1948, the Mahoning Drive-In Theater single screen theater hasn’t changed much over the last 71 years. A white marquis with red lettering spans over the one entrance and the one exit with a narrow booth where the ticket taker waits to usher you in. Historically, the parking area was designated by wooden posts that had bulky metal speakers hanging on them; you’d pick your spot, roll down the window, grab the speaker and hang it over your partially rolled down window and wait for the movie to begin. Today, technology allows us to tune to a radio station to hear the movie, but if you choose to sit outside (bring lawn chairs so as to enjoy the fresh mountain air!), you may want to bring a portable radio for clearer audio.
A concession stand at the back of the drive in offers candy, hot dogs, popcorn, and other movie food for purchase. If you’re really hungry you might want to bring one of the kids along to help carry the food back to the car. Speaking of kids, the other change we have noticed is the lack of a swing set (probably due to safety or insurance reasons!). As children, the best part of the movie, other than the cartoons that began the show, was swinging on the squeaky swings that were located directly under the massive screen. The sun would be setting, parents would be talking and laughing, and us kids were running mild all over the theater’s grounds, playing tag, and swinging on the swings. Life was simpler, and candy and the freedom to run were all it took to make us happy!
The worst part of going to the drive-in is having to wait until the end of the day to experience it, but we promise it will be worth it, and since you’re headed to Lehighton anyway, you may as well participate in some of the fun this beautiful town has to offer! Take a hike to Bake Oven Knob, which is a part of the Appalachian Trail and one of the highest points in the area; the views from this spot are absolutely breathtaking! If traveling with children, a visit to Baer Memorial Park is a must-do. Its pool is the best way to beat the summer heat!
When hunger pangs strike, Bonnie and Clyde’s is one of our favorite places to stop for food and drink! Offering 30s style décor, refreshing and innovative cocktails, and the tastiest pub food in the area, B&C is a dining EXPERIENCE, not just a place to fill your stomachs! Tucked away between two large buildings in the downtown area, it is also famous for its craft beers, but their cocktails are what blow us away. From the Bee’s Knees Martini to their Lethal Lemonade, each sip you take is more refreshing the last!
Vacation shopping is a popular activity, no matter where you travel, and if you’re looking for something you absolutely can’t live without, we’re pretty sure it can be found on the shelves of Claypool’s General Store! Located at 101 N 1st Street, this charming spot specializes in vintage, retro, and antique items that will look perfect on that nook you have in the living area! Open Wednesday through Sunday until 5:00 PM, you won’t have to worry about missing the movie, because it closes long before the sun goes down; you’ll even have time for a quick bite at Bonnie & Clyde’s after the doors have been locked for the day!
Once the last tchotchke has been purchased, the last sip has been tasted, and the last picture has been taken, you don’t have to feel sad because you know you are headed to the Mahoning Drive-In for a night of entertainment and concessions! Lehighton may be a small town, but this trip back in time is exactly what you and your family needs and the memories made on this day trip and nighttime experience will be ones you will remember forever.
All the movies at Mahoning Drive-In Theater are classic ones shown on 35 mm film, making your visit even more nostalgic. Featuring themed movie nights, including Harry Potter and 80’s teen comedy marathons as well as an interesting selection of many other movie genres, your trip back to the past will be a shining addition to your Poconos escape, as will our Pocono Mountain Rentals vacation homes—reserve yours today!