Not quite a drive-in, but just as good


Do you remember going to drive-in movies? I do.

My parents would load us up in the station wagon and head to The Trail Drive-In (where the current Pizza Hut is now) and we would pull into the slot and attach the speakers to the window. Shortly after, we would get snacks.

If we were lucky (and if the movie was boring to us kids) we got to play on the playground. I have a vivid memory of watching Viva Max! there. Sometimes, we would have bathed and been dressed in pajamas just in case we fell asleep before the movie was over.

I’m not sure when it closed and the last drive-in I went to was most likely at the Mission Drive-In in San Antonio. There may have been friends hiding in the trunk, but I digress.

That memory was dislodged as I watched The Sandlot at the Atascosa River Park on Friday night. The free event, sponsored by the Atascosa Family Crisis Center and the Pleasanton Police Department – along with others who provided snacks, had about 200 people attending. Our own Erika Vela was passing out candy to the movie goers.

Chairs and blankets plus a few strollers were situated on the baseball field where the large screen was set up. A nice breeze set in and amazingly I wasn’t bothered by mosquitoes. Even the conversations and babble of younger kiddos seemed to vanish in the air. Maybe because it was the openess of it all or it could have been because I was enjoying the movie so much.

This was THE “go-to” movie my kids watched every summer. The VHS version was taken with us on numerous summer trips to be watched on my daughter’s combination TV/VCR that ran on AC/ DC power. Ahh … the memories. It is still one of my top 10 movies of all times.

I felt like I could almost do a quote-along. Such funny scenes and memorable lines. It is a great film of friendship, tolerance, bravery strewn with boyish antics – back when kids played pickup games in empty sandlots everywhere. There’s even an antagonist – The Beast – and the scary neighbor turns out to be … well, if you haven’t seen the movie, I don’t want to spoil it for you.

The way I see it, summer is a time for fun. Free fun is even better.

Plan on seeing the next film on Friday, July 28. On the screen will be Toy Story – another go-to movie. Thanks again to AFCC for sponsoring this!

p.s. If you haven’t seen The Sandlot, please get it soon. If you have, then you know what I mean.

SUE BROWN is the Editor of the Pleasanton Express. You may E-mail her at sbrown@

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