The historic DeAnza Drive-In movie theater closed down October 3, 2009 after being a fixture in Tucson for over 60 years. It was first established as the Cactus Drive-In Theatre in 1951 and became the DeAnza in the late 1970s. Hundreds of thousands of Tucsonans got to experience the uniqueness of an outdoor movie. On JULY 16th that experience will once again be available to them.
A newly formed non-profit (501c3 Pending) corporation was formed in March and this dedicated group is intent on bringing back the Cactus Drive-In to Tucson. The event this Saturday will be a fundraiser for the revival of a community oriented drive-in theatre. Volunteers have been working tirelessly for almost 18 months to make their vision of a new drive-in happen.
This exciting fundraising event for the Cactus Drive-in will be held on their temporary location on the Avenida Del Convento just south of the Mercado San Augustin building. (http://mercadosanagustin.com/) It is located just west of I-10 on Congress and then south on Avenida Del Covento. The suggested donations will be $10 per car or $4 per individual to help support their project. Some seating will be available for bike-ins and walk-ins but limited. Gates open at 6:30 PM and Cartoon etc.seen at 7:30 and feature at 8 PM.
This exciting event will be the first of a series of fundraisers to help make The Cactus Drive-In Theatre a reality. They will be showing a family type film that was actually the LAST feature film shown the LAST night the DeAnza was open. It was projected onto the giant cinemascope screen that the foundation was able to save from demolition and stored. The movie CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS is enjoyable by all ages. The event is being sponsored by Cox Communications and the Mercado San Augustin.
Along with the feature, a historical cartoon and an intermission presentation from the past will be shown before the feature. A short video highlighting the amazing efforts volunteers have contributed to this project will also be seen. The foundation has TWO professional projectors and TWO complete sound systems donated to their project. One of these FM sound transmitters will be used at the event and broadcasted to the attendees’ radio.
Because of a growing demand by the community, support for this new vision for the future is growing. By looking at their facebook following so far on their group page Cactus Drive-In Theater project that interest is growing rapidly with a following of well over 1500 and growing daily. Their website is : (http://www.cactusdriveintheater.com/) and a blog site: (http://cactusdriveintheater.com/wordpress/)