Here’s an idea I had several years ago and has proven to be a very effective event. Four times a year I plan a drive-in movie to hold my church parking lot. Here’s what I do. I project the movie on a large screen on our parking lot and project sound through an FM transmitter, which allows viewers to tune into the specific station in their vehicles. Most back into parking spots with minivans and truks and enjoy the movie from the back of their vehicles or in nearby lawn chairs. I usually have the sound coming out our parking lot speakers (it’s already wired) for those who aren’t near a car speaker.

I rent the largest screen I can without haveing to use a truss-styled screen (9×15 feet I think) for $80. I use whatever projector I can get my hands on (usually I pull my projector from Kids Church). I bought an FM transmitter for $300 (I think. I’ll post the brand and the cost when I come across it again). Although it’s a bigger cost up front, I’ve used it flawlessly close to a dozen times now. I also sell concessions at a reasonable price.

Basically, I break even. I don’t charge anything for the drive-in (actually you can’t by law if you’re showing a movie). I hang the screen a few hours before the show and spend the 20-40 minutes before the showing greeting families and hanging out with new people. I spend most of the rest of the time at the concession stand taking with people coming to get snacks.

Last thing to note. The best times to plan a drive-in are just before daylight savings time in the fall and just before the same in the spring. If you don’t time it right, it won’t get dark until too late to include your younger kids. However, depending on where you live, it may be too cold at these times, so you may just have to start later.