HANCOCK COUNTY, W.Va. (WTRF)- The Hilltop Drive-in originally opened in 1950, in what was considered the golden age of drive-in movies.
Throughout the 1950s and ’60s there were over five thousand drive-in theatres across the country. Today there are just over 300 nationwide.
The Hilltop however has been able to stand the test of time.
Owner Katie Beaver says that’s because of strong support from the local community. Katie’s father was the theatre first projectionist when it opened in 1950. He took over the business in 1988, now Katie runs the day to day operations. She says the Hilltop was a staple in the community for decades and was often sold out on weekends.
She says the business has seen a number of changes over the years.
One of the biggest was the conversion from 35 mm to digital.
It was a cost that caused many drive-in’s to close.
Now that they have the greenlight to open this weekend ,staff and management will have a number of new challenges.
They will only be allowed to fill half of their available spaces.
There will be social distancing policies in place for the concession stands and restrooms.
Also the most current films are not yet available
Despite all of the limitations, Beaver says she is confident the community will continue to support her business, just as the have over the past.
The Drive-in movie is a place where all ages can enjoy a great movie. And the safety of their customers is the top priority.
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