Back To The Future: Saratoga’s Drive-Ins

Rose-tinted movie memories from a bygone era.

The Malta Drive-In before a showing of 'Avengers: Endgame' on Sunday, April 28. (Kyle Adams)
View Gallery 14 Photos

When I was a kid, the drive-in was a summertime treat. Curled up under an old blanket in the backseat of our cherry-red Buick Skylark, I was in heaven. Jammies and junk food, stars in the sky and a cool breeze floating through the rolled-down windows. What could be better? Spin the clock forward a bit, and I’m in the backseat again, steaming up my boyfriend’s Delta 88, like that Meat Loaf song “Paradise By The Dashboard Light.”

America’s outdoor movie theaters are disappearing, with only 348 still flickering. But in Saratoga Springs, we’re lucky. Films al fresco are as thick as a vanilla milkshake.

Three miles from Downtown Saratoga, we’ve got The Malta Drive-In Theatre, which first opened in 1949. And there are five more within 50 miles: the Glen Drive-In near Lake George; the Ozoner 29 Twin Drive-In in Broadalbin and El Rancho in Palatine Bridge to the west; Hathaway’s Drive-In Theatre in Rensselaer County and the Jericho Drive-In in Albany County.

I still love drive-ins. At my mainstay in Malta, I munch and snuggle under a ratty blanket—I just don’t hang out in the backseat anymore.

Make sure to check out the exclusive photo gallery above by saratoga living‘s Kyle Adams.

Karen Bjornland

An award-winning writer, Contributing Editor Karen Bjornland has been contributing to saratoga living for 12 years. Her work has also appeared in Adirondack Life, the Albany Times Union and Schenectady's Daily Gazette, among many other publications. She lives outside of Saratoga Springs in Greenfield Center.


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