Sunnyside - "Largest Screen in the World"

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Expand view Topic review: Sunnyside - "Largest Screen in the World"

Re: Sunnyside - "Largest Screen in the World"

by Richard Frey » Sun Aug 02, 2020 11:24 am

The Sunnyside Drive In would have opened several years earlier, but for a tragic accident. While they were building the screen a worker was killed in an accident. Due to litigation, the whole project was delayed for quite some time.

Re: Sunnyside - "Largest Screen in the World"

by Lost Fresno » Wed Apr 22, 2020 3:18 pm

That's some great historical photographs there, Karl! Very much appreciated for the fine share!

Re: Sunnyside - "Largest Screen in the World"

by KarlJensen75 » Wed Apr 22, 2020 12:54 pm

I grew up near Fowler and Kings Canyon, 75-86, but never actually went to the drive in out there. We moved to the north side after sixth grade and things have been downhill since then, lol. I have a bunch of other Sunnyside photos if anyone's interested, and more of these. (I also grabbed the "K" from the Marquee the day I was out taking these, of course, and still have it.) So there's my Sunnyside Drive in story. Cheers.

Re: Sunnyside - "Largest Screen in the World"

by Scott Whitney » Sun Sep 15, 2019 4:45 pm

At the height of their popularity, there were over 4,000 Drive-in theaters in the USA. Over time the land they occupied became more profitable than operating as a theatre. Many became housing tracts, business parks and shopping centers. A few years ago the movie industry went digital. More Drive-in theaters closed because the cost of upgrading the equipment didn't make financial sense.

Today there are about only 350 still operating. With the recent popularity of video steaming, I suspect the number will continue to dwindle. The Sunnyside, Starlite, Moonglow and Woodward are all gone. But the memories will always remain.

Re: Sunnyside - "Largest Screen in the World"

by Fresno2SoCal » Fri Jan 25, 2019 9:57 pm

I think I remember seeing Dawn of the Dead there. Halloween the original. Best Little Whorehouse in Texas.

lol good times

Re: Sunnyside - "Largest Screen in the World"

by Lost Fresno » Mon May 25, 2015 6:17 pm

I found this interesting archeology type find at the old Sunnyside Drive in site. They were looking for old coins but it is interesting to see how the old area looks today. Bleak to say the least. But I remember a better time when it was a wonderful event to go the the Sunnyside drive in.

Re: Sunnyside Drive-In

by took64a » Mon May 11, 2015 3:24 pm

As I remember, Sunnyside was the only drive in that had heaters that you could hang on your windows along with the speaker! I attcahed an ad that states on the top" "ELECTRIC CAR HEATERS".This was huge because if it was winter and you went anyplace else, you had to start up the car motor every 30 minutes to warm the car back up. But along with the drive in staff wearing long white 1800's type motoring outfits with cap and goggles on their heads, the costumes AND the heaters went away after the first year. But still, that was one huge screen.
October 9, 1965 ad for heaters at Sunnyside

Re: Sunnyside Drive-In

by Ladylinda248 » Sun Oct 05, 2014 3:20 pm

What great memories of a Drive-In that should have never been torn down. Pacific Theaters had 2, the Sunnyside and the Woodward Park Drive In. Sitting in lawn chairs drinking sodas, eating pizza, and watching a movie was a great time on the weekends with friends and family.

Re: Sunnyside Drive-In

by MikeS1957 » Fri Feb 28, 2014 11:58 pm

Saw a lot of movies there with my folks and then when I started driving in 73 with my girlfriend(s), well we didn't always watch the movies... My last GF/my wife and I played a silly game called Airplane there. Whoever spotted a plane called it. The winery across the street made for an interesting smell during grape harvest, yech. I still don't like wine.

Re: Sunnyside Drive-In

by senpaidonna » Sat Feb 15, 2014 1:03 am

Saw sooo many movies here. It used to be the "nice" drive-in. It was so convenient, too. There was a 7-11 down the street to buy a six pack of Orange Crush in the little bottles, and a KFC near to buy a barrel of chicken. Wear your jammies, eat cold chicken and fresh popcorn, play on the playground up front. My dad used to buy hamburgers at the snack bar, but my mom would never let me have one. She said they'd give me ptomaine poisoning. But my dad always slipped me one, mustard-y and steamy warm in its foil wrapper. I loved going there, unless we took John. John was the son of my parents' friend. He was too scared to go to the playground, and he always threw up before the movie was over. My mom said it must have been the smell from the across the street, but my dad and I knew it was because he was, as my dad said, "a doofy scare-baby." I drive past it now, and I still think of crouching down and eating those forbidden burgers and hearing John say, "I don't feel good."