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Where was the Oleander drive-in theater located and what is its history?

Ken Little

The Park-Vue Drive-in, at 3727 Oleander Drive, opened on June 15, 1950. It had one screen and parking for 400 cars, according to http://cinematreasures.org.

The first feature shown at the drive-in was “The Daughter of Rosie O’Grady,” starring June Haven and Joel McCrea.

The dimensions of the drive-in screen were 53 feet by 54 feet. The drive-in was operated by H.E. Meiselman of Charlotte.

It was located in the same general area that the Books-A-Million and Office Depot stores are today.

The drive-in closed in 1961, but not before providing moviegoers with plenty of entertainment. One 1951 double feature advertised in the Wilmington Morning Star has as the main feature “Mutiny,” starring Angela Lansbury and Mark Stevens. The second feature on the bill was “The African Queen,” starring Humphrey Bogart and Katharine Hepburn.

The Park-Vue drive-in was advertised as being “at the city limits” on “the new Wrightsville Beach Road.”

Opening night admission was 40 cents, with children under 13 free, and featured “1,000 free Pop Sicles.”

There were at least seven drive-in movie theaters in Wilmington, with most operating between the late 1940s and the early 1980s. During the 1960s, there may have been as many as five drive-ins operating at one time.


How many drive-in movie theaters were in Wilmington?

Are there any local theaters that show independent films?

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