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Saint Ignatius bringing back drive-in movie theater

Saint Ignatius drive in movies
Posted at 4:04 PM, Aug 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-29 10:47:32-04

ST. IGNATIUS — Saint Ignatius is one of those small towns where they enjoy a good get together -- whether it’s the annual fireman’s picnic or the summer parade and the celebration of "Good Old Days."

Both events were canceled this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic but as the sun goes down on Saturday, what could be a new town tradition begins -- and it's one the "old timers" might remember.

It's been a while since the drive-in movie theaters ruled the night but in this age of COVID, they might just be what the doctor ordered.

Saint Ignatius Drive-In
The drive-in movie theater has been set up at Good Old Days Park in Saint Ignatius.

Now, a hometown, homemade drive-in movie lot has been created through the efforts of the Saint Ignatius Chamber of Commerce.

“It was just talk at first after we canceled Good Old Days, just a brief candid conversation following that meeting and before we know it, things were happening," the Chamber's JP Thomas said.

"Our community is pretty close-knit and for us not to have Good Old Days is hard, added fellow Saint Ignatius Chamber of Commerce member Janice Heffern.

The idea for the drive-in theater caught quickly on with donations from many local businesses pitching in for the lumber and labor, the projector and concessions.

A Facebook post about the new theater also got a lot of shares, so the Chamber is expecting a crowd on Saturday.

"We come down and tested it out one night, walked all over to see where we could see it from and where we can’t see it from. And it’s a pretty beautiful screen," Heffern told MTN News.

"When people pull up, we’ll have the radio frequency there for them to tun into to, and then it should all just follow from there. Fingers crossed," she added.

The cars will come to the Good Old Days Park in Saint Ignatius -- which seems appropriate.

The vehicle will provide the proper social distancing needed, but people will still be able to smile and wave and see to people they might not have seen in a while in this very strange summer.

While it might not be fancy, this is how one small town is keeping it together all while having to be apart.

"It’s been hard, not being able to be with our community," Thomas said. "So, to be able to do something where we can just park next to eath other and take something in is a big deal.

Admission is a suggested donation. The first showing of Space Jam is Saturday night at dusk with another showing after that.

Chamber members are asking people to mask up if they leave their cars -- and to stay tuned for more movie showings.