Create outdoor movie magic at municipal golf course

This is how our outdoor movie screen and fleet of new golf carts create “Drive In” Movie magic off 18th hole at municipal golf course in Longview, WA

Golf Cars Drive-in at Longview, WA

"Outdoor movie events are another way for the community to come together, get outdoors, and enjoy our City’s parks," says Alissa Manno, Recreation Office, City of Longview Parks & Recreation.

Longview, Washington is located at the junction of the Cowlitz and Columbia rivers, some 850 miles north-west of Open Air Cinema.

What is your usual peak season for outdoor movie events?

Our peak season for outdoor movie events here in the Pacific Northwest is July & August, our driest and warmest months of the summer.  We run a “Movies at the Lake” series at Lake Sacajawea Park and offer 4-5 free, family-friendly movie events weekly throughout the summer. They are very popular!  

What was your most memorable screening last year? We had a few really memorable experiences this last year!  

We took over management of our municipal golf course at the beginning of 2019, and last summer we had our first “Drive In” Movie!  Our entire fleet of new golf carts were lined up in front of the screen off the 18th hole and we played Disney’s famous golf movie, The Greatest Game Ever Played.  Local businesses sponsored the event to provide free entry and refreshments for attendees to enjoy. It was the perfect way to bring people out to the golf course who ordinarily may never have gone and showcase all the improvements we’ve made!  

We also utilized our big screen at one of our Teen Late Night events at our teen drop-in center, The Boulevard, for the teens to play video games on it in the green space behind our building, they had such a blast!

Would you like to share some outdoor screening management tips with your peers in other communities across the US?

1) Don’t forget to bring the movie with you!!

2) If your movie isn’t a brand new copy, make sure to watch it to make sure that there are no skips or scratches!

3) Think about who your audience is.  Little kid movies are friendly for the whole family. But movies can often run past little one’s bedtimes depending on when dusk is.  Older movies or movies for older kids may have language or themes that are inappropriate for younger children.  

4) Pro tip!  If you are showing a beloved movie from your own childhood, watch it again yourself!  It may have way more inappropriate language than you remember!

Who do you normally source content from for your outdoor movie screenings?

We get ideas for what to show from the community, sponsors, staff, etc, and source the movies themselves from Criterion Pictures  and Swank Motion Pictures Movie Licencing.

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