St. Louis' Ronnies Indoor Drive-In
Drive-ins may be disappearing across America, but there is a new one that captures the nostalgia in an air conditioned and bug free environment. It is located inside the Ronnies 20 Cine in South St. Louis County, Missouri (See map below). From 1948 to 1974 the site was the traditional style Ronnies Drive-In, complete with a kiddie railroad around the playground at the base of the screen. The new indoor complex features 20 theaters all with stadium seating, fold down armrests with cupholders and extra wide spacing between seat rows.
The stars of the theater complex are the 21 classic 1950s cars waiting in the drive-in. While similar in concept to the SciFi Drive-In at Disney World, the Ronnies cars are real, not three quarter scale fiberglass replicas (see below). Sure, all but two cars are just the rear quarter sections modified to accommodate a booth seat and table. But the nostalgia is there alive and well. Fine craftsmanship is evident in the conversion of cars to restaurant booths.
Feature films are not shown on the drive-in screen. Ronnies shows vintage movie trailers, sports TV, wonderful old snack bar promos along with previews of upcoming feature films. The refreshment stand offers traditional food and snacks. This is a destination to be enjoyed. Stop by. Examine the cars. Grab a burger and drift away to the good old days. Admission free.
For more info:
Disney World SciFi Drive-In car
3/4 scale fiberglass replica
© 2000 Jim Potts
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