Just a short drive beyond the Virginia-North Carolina border, 28 miles north of Greensboro and 80 miles northwest of Raleigh, there is a place where you can feel like you’ve gone back in time. Imagine driving up a gravel driveway with the sounds of fifties and sixties movies off in the distance as you approach a large outdoor movie screen. Eden, North Carolina is the home of one of the only drive-in theaters still in operation in the region. Movie goers hungry for 50s nostalgia or those who want to enjoy a movie on the big screen underneath the stars frequent the Eden Drive-In, which is owned by Rockingham County residents Dave and Judy Robertson and located at 106 Fireman Club Road. For the history buffs, this particular venue was originally named the Leaksville Drive-In, with another drive-in theater in the area boasting the name of Eden Drive-In. After the Leaksville Drive-In closed and was re-opened, it was re-opened with the current name.
Watching a movie at the Eden Drive-In is a popular choice for families because prior to the movie, children under the age of 12 have access to a playground, with an area for teens to play horseshoes. Gates open at 7:00 p.m. and movies begin around 9:00, so offering things for children to do is great for parents. Watching a movie at this drive-in is also much cheaper than taking the whole family to one of the larger, corporate-owned theaters. Tickets are $5 per adult, $2 for children ages 6-11, and kids under 5 years old are admitted for free. With the price of one admission you get to watch two movies, and sometimes they offer a triple feature. While many theaters who offer discounted prices show movies that aren’t new releases, the Eden Drive-In shows a very good number of the latest movies. Owner Judy Robertson negotiates with movie studios weekly to get films that are in demand and that match the requests of patrons.
While drive-ins from the olden days used speakers, the Eden Drive-In broadcasts movies over an FM station, making it possible for patrons with portable radios to enjoy the movie outside of the car. Imagine how romantic a movie date could be laying on a blanket under the open sky! If you’re worried about the sound quality, don’t be. I have never had any complaints about being able to hear the movie over the radio broadcast.
Non-aggressive pets are allowed at the Eden Drive-In, with the stipulations that they are kept on a leash or in the car and owners clean up after them. I haven’t seen many dogs at the venue, so there was no barking to distract me from the movie. Visitors are also allowed to bring their own food and drinks to the venue, but they have a snack bar with a full menu of delicious fare if guests get hungry and didn’t pack any snacks. Food items include hot dogs, cheeseburgers, chicken tenders, pizza, chili cheese fries, candy, milkshakes, and ice cream. Some of the food is cheaper than it would be at a traditional theater and the quality is much better. Being served by friendly staff members is also a plus at this venue and you can eat at the picnic tables.
For more information, visit the drive-in’s website or the Facebook page. You can contact staff at the Eden Drive-In at (336) 623-9969.