The 66 Drive-In is an outdoor, car drive-in theater just off of Highway Route 66 near Joplin, Missouri. It was built in 1949 and was one of over 4,000 drive-in theaters that were during the post World War II years. The concession stand/projection booth and ticket booth were designed in the Art Deco and Streamline Moderne styles. The theater was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2003.
Backstory and Context
Televisions were not widespread at the time, so these theaters allowed people to get away and enjoy an evening out. Poles were dispersed in the parking area to hold loudspeakers (radios were not a standard feature in cars by that point). The screen was widened sometime after 1953 in order to accommodate the change to widescreen film format (movie studios wanted made the change to compete with televisions, which by then were becoming more popular). A playground was added to the site as well. The theater operated until 1985 and was closed until it was renovated in 1998. It is still in operation today and shows movies on weekend evenings.
"66 Drive-In." http://www.nps.gov/nr/travel/route66/66_drive_in_carthage.html. Retrieved 4-24-15.