Ridgefield hosting free drive-in movies Saturdays in June
While Ridgefield lacks a permanent drive-in movie theater, Billy Craig, owner of Craig’s Fine Jewelry, has found a way to create a temporary one.
Working with the Ridgefield Playhouse, the Town of Ridgefield will be presenting free Saturday night drive-in movies on a temporary screen at Ridgefield High School every Saturday at 9 p.m. throughout the month of June, beginning on June 6.
“Finding a screen large enough that wasn’t too expensive was a challenge,” Craig said in a news release. “But we found one. With the Ridgefield Playhouse procuring the films for us, we were able to come up with a short series for each Saturday night in June.”
Andrew Kolaski, from A Plus Audio, will provide the projector and set up the audio for the town screenings, which will be heard in vehicles through a radio station. All vehicles will be socially distanced by pulling into every other spot.
The first film will be “Legally Blonde” (sponsored by Fairfield County Bank), a nod to the Ridgefield High School students who were unable to put on their final show this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. “Dirty Dancing” will be screened June 13 (sponsored by the Ridgefield Conservatory of Dance), followed by “Grease” on June 20 (sponsored by The Ridgefield Playhouse) as the kick off to Make Music Day and will feature downloadable lyrics for a sing-a-long. “Field of Dreams” will wrap up the short series on June 27 (sponsored by Downtown Ridgefield Member Merchants).
“If all goes well and people are enjoying it, perhaps we will be able to get more fun films that are family-friendly and great summer movies,” said Allison Stockel, playhouse executive director.
Craig hopes that use of the screen will go beyond just the drive-in movie concept and is making it available to other arts organizations for use in other ways, such as drive-in concerts or shows.
Per the governor’s executive order, all moviegoers must stay in their cars as any outdoor event with people gathering together outside is permissible for 50 people or less.
“Because patrons will be in their cars, we can have 100 vehicles or more,” Craig said. “And, with the movies not starting until 9 p.m., we want people to go to the restaurants, or order take out to eat in their car as they watch the movie, but most of all we want this to be a great experience for our community.”
All of the films are free and will be on a first-come, first-served basis, with the “drive-in” lot (use the entrance off Route 116) opening at 8 p.m. Although this is town-run event, more information can be found on the playhouse website, www.ridgefieldplayhouse.org