End of an Era... Miracle Twin Closing, US23 Drive in for sale. - Great Lakes 4x4. The largest offroad forum in the Midwest

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Old March 5th, 2009, 02:32 PM   #1
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Default End of an Era... Miracle Twin Closing, US23 Drive in for sale.

This makes me very sad.

http://www.mlive.com/business/mid-mi...could_mea.html



Quote:
BURTON, Michigan -- Throngs of people have enjoyed the drive-in movie experience: Parents who brought their young children who fell asleep halfway through the second movie. Young lovebirds smooching in the back seat. Teenagers goofing off outside the car.

Now all these memories may be just that -- memories. Drive-in movie theaters in Genesee County may soon be a thing of the past.

The owners of the Miracle Twin Drive-in in Burton said Tuesday it will not reopen. The announcement by National Amusements comes on the heels of U.S. 23 Twin Drive-In Theatre in Mundy Township being put up for sale.

"We wish to thank our loyal patrons who have shared great movies and memories with us over the years, and hope to see them at our other area theaters," a National Amusements statement said.

Spokeswoman Wanda Whitson did not give a reason why it was closing, but drive-ins nationwide have been dwindling for a long time. Only about 10 remain in Michigan.

"When I was younger, it was fun to go watch two movies," said Randy McCallister, 40, of Burton. "We used to take Hamady (Bros.) grocery bags and fill them with buttery popcorn. We took out the lawn chairs and sat and watched the movie."

The Miracle Drive-in is literally in McCallister's backyard, and he was shocked to hear that the 2008 season was its last.

"Last summer, there were people lining up," he said. "It was so busy."

Tina Pilarski, 37, of Burton took her teenage children to the drive-in for the first time last summer to see "Iron Man."

"It rained the whole time, the weather was awful," she said. "But (the kids) really liked it. They thought it was cool."

Kipp Sherer, co-founder of drive-ins.com, said it is the nostalgia of a drive-in movie that attracts people. They bring their own snacks, lounge in lawn chairs (sometimes even sleeping bags) and take the whole family to the show.

"It's just something you don't find as much anymore," he said. "It's a really good family draw. You can bring your kids and don't have to worry about them sitting still."

Not everyone is sad to see it go.

Bonnie Rogers, who has lived in the modular home park behind the theater for 12 years, could barely contain her excitement.

"(The management) didn't know how to control the people," she said. "There was a lot of riffraff. Some people didn't even watch the movie, they just played their radio loud."

The theater opened in 1972. In 1975, the theater's previous owners got into some trouble by showing "Bambi" and "The Happy Hooker" at the same time. The Burton City Council was not amused, sending the owners a letter protesting the combination, according to Journal files.

These days the theater is showing its age. Weeds are strewn throughout the property and the sign that overlooks I-69 is weathered and worn.

The Miracle Twin is one of a slew of outdoor and indoor movie theaters to close recently. Courtland Cinemas in Burton closed in January, Fenton Cinemas closed in December and Showcase Cinemas East in Burton and Cinema 10 in Flint Township closed in 2007.

A for sale sign also went up at U.S. 23 Twin on Sunday after nearly 60 years in business. The theater is expected to be open this summer, but it's unclear what will happen after that.

The owner died last month, and the remaining family members live out of state most of the year, so they plan to sell the 35-acre property.

It is also unclear what will happen to the Miracle Drive-in property, said Burton Councilwoman Laurie Tinnin. She said she would like to advertise the area for commercial use.

Tinnin, who grew up in Flint's west side, said she has many fond memories of the Miracle Twin.

"As a child I went there with my family all the time," she said. "It was a way for our family to take us and not hire a baby sitter. We used to be able to wear pajamas and have a great time. It was a wonderful place for families."
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Old March 5th, 2009, 02:35 PM   #2
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The Getty 4 is still going strong in Muskegon.
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Old March 5th, 2009, 02:36 PM   #3
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damn that sucks! won't be any left anywhere soon.
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Old March 5th, 2009, 02:38 PM   #4
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Old March 5th, 2009, 02:38 PM   #5
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That sucks, I used to go they every summer when I was little, and actually went back this summer.
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Old March 5th, 2009, 03:03 PM   #6
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Damn, now at that's left in SE Mich is the Ford/Wyoming....
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Old March 5th, 2009, 03:05 PM   #7
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The theater opened in 1972. In 1975, the theater's previous owners got into some trouble by showing "Bambi" and "The Happy Hooker" at the same time. The Burton City Council was not amused, sending the owners a letter protesting the combination, according to Journal files.
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Old March 5th, 2009, 03:13 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by BlooMule View Post
Damn, now at that's left in SE Mich is the Ford/Wyoming....
In the summer you can go to the Compuware Arena off Beck Rd. and M14. Went there last summer. They just use the parking lot and set up screens and such. Pretty good time.
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Old March 5th, 2009, 03:17 PM   #9
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That sucks.



The cherry bowl in Honor Michigan is still open as though.

http://www.cherrybowldrivein.com/directions.html
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Old March 5th, 2009, 04:20 PM   #10
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ive probably been to the miracle twin 5 times in the last couple years. sucks to see it go. it was ALWAYS packed when i went. no idea why it would close
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Old March 5th, 2009, 06:24 PM   #11
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I think there's still one open in Coldwater or around there.

I remember my folks taking us when we were little. That was big fun.
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Old March 5th, 2009, 06:35 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by chevotass View Post
no idea why it would close
Quote:
The owner died last month, and the remaining family members live out of state most of the year, so they plan to sell the 35-acre property.
What do I win?
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Old March 5th, 2009, 10:49 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yellowjeeperman View Post
What do I win?
Wasn't that referring to why the US23 drive in is for sale? I thought it said that National amusements did not give a reason for closing...

Quote:
Spokeswoman Wanda Whitson did not give a reason why it was closing, but drive-ins nationwide have been dwindling for a long time. Only about 10 remain in Michigan.
Quote:
A for sale sign also went up at U.S. 23 Twin on Sunday after nearly 60 years in business. The theater is expected to be open this summer, but it's unclear what will happen after that.

The owner died last month, and the remaining family members live out of state most of the year, so they plan to sell the 35-acre property.
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Old March 6th, 2009, 08:56 AM   #14
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Someone told me of one that was still operating near Lexington,mi., anyone know that one?
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Old March 6th, 2009, 09:04 AM   #15
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The Fenton Cinema closed?
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Old March 6th, 2009, 05:54 PM   #16
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Quote:
Bonnie Rogers, who has lived in the modular home park behind the theater for 12 years, could barely contain her excitement.

"(The management) didn't know how to control the people," she said. "There was a lot of riffraff. Some people didn't even watch the movie, they just played their radio loud."
Then maybe you shouldn't have moved next to a drive in movie theater if that stuff bothered you!?
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Old March 6th, 2009, 07:45 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Strangler View Post
The Fenton Cinema closed?
Yep, and is now covered in graffitti, along with a ton of bridge supports along 23 recently.

I have a LOT of good memories at that place recently in the past couple years
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Old March 12th, 2009, 12:27 AM   #18
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The Fenton Cinema closed?
Yeah, the Fenton cinema was great back in the 90s, but early this decade, maybe 01 or 02, they started losing business after they lost all their good managers. They sold it a year or so later and the new guy neglected it badly, and left it to lazy kids and unqualified managers to basically run it into the ground. I keep reading how the economy or the Trillian put them out of business, but they lost most customers because they were filthy and poorly run. Too bad, they had a good thing there back in the day, and now its getting graffiti all over it and sitting empty. Maybe in 4 years when the current regime is run out of office, someone will be able to buy it and fix it, but at this point, fixing it up just to have the goverment tax it back out of business is crazy. FAIR TAX! Not spend all someone elses money, think about that!
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