[ti:Historic Season for Drive-In Theaters Comes to End]
[00:00.04]With temperatures dropping across the United States,
[00:04.96]drive-in theaters do not have much time left.
[00:09.48]Still, many drive-ins, or places where people watch movies in their cars,
[00:16.84]are staying open beyond their usual closing date for the season.
[00:23.08]The Northfield Drive-in, near Hinsdale, New Hampshire,
[00:27.64]went two months past its closing date.
[00:31.48]The drive-in has played an important part in the community.
[00:37.44]Along with movies, it has held graduation ceremonies
[00:42.52]for everyone from young students to doctors of medicine.
[00:47.84]Northfield held its final event last weekend.
[00:52.28]Visitor Julia Wiggins called the drive-in "a major community service project. "
[01:00.48]Hundreds of miles away, Jay Mowery operates
[01:04.76]the Cumberland Drive-in in Newville, Pennsylvania.
[01:09.92]Mowery has held a wedding there,
[01:12.68]a trick-or-treating event and other activities.
[01:16.88]He also closed the drive-in for the season last weekend.
[01:22.24]But, like other drive-in owners, he expects to continue
[01:28.20]socially-distanced events when he re-opens in the spring.
[01:33.56]"It's been a lot better than being closed,
[01:36.64]and it's certainly helped the community.
[01:39.40]It's given them a place to gather," says Mowery.
[01:43.56]John Vincent is president of the United Drive-In Theatre Owners Association.
[01:50.40]Vincent estimates more than 200 drive-ins
[01:54.56]were still operating through last weekend.
[01:58.04]Showing movies is only part of what these drive-ins do
[02:03.08]- especially since Hollywood film companies stopped releasing their big films.
[02:10.08]Marcella Snyder runs the Tibbs Drive-in
[02:14.28]in the midwestern city of Indianapolis, Indiana.
[02:19.04]Snyder usually holds one or two private events a year.
[02:24.72]This year, she held 50.
[02:27.64]And, she says, the requests are still coming for November and December.
[02:35.52]"If it starts snowing, what am I going to do?" asked Snyder.
[02:41.36]Like indoor theaters, drive-ins are limiting visitor numbers
[02:46.68]by about half to make safe social distancing possible.
[02:52.44]This fall, most drive-ins are seeing much higher attendance than normal.
[02:58.76]Drive-ins like Tibbs now use online ticketing and food ordering.
[03:05.20]"We built our whole business on nostalgia
[03:08.40]and it's nice that we've turned a corner.
[03:11.64]We've kind of brought it into the 21st century," says Snyder.
[03:18.40]Some American drive-ins have even more to offer.
[03:22.40]Just outside the city of Detroit, Michigan,
[03:26.12]is the Ford Wyoming Drive-In.
[03:30.12]It has five large screens and is open all night,
[03:34.24]from sundown to sunrise.
[03:37.12]The Ford Wyoming does not have a "season."
[03:41.24]Its operator also owns a building company,
[03:45.16]so the drive-in has snow-clearing equipment available nearby.
[03:50.48]The drive-in is open year round.
[03:54.08]Co-owner William Clark admits the Ford Wyoming is "unusual" for drive-ins.
[04:01.68]He says ticket sales this October were about two times higher than usual.
[04:08.72]"We never close," he says, unless "there's a 10-inch snowstorm
[04:13.88]right before the movie goes on the screen."
[04:17.56]I'm John Russell. 更多听力请访问51VOA.COM