The 25 Drive In Theater, 63061 Highway 25 North, Amory, Mississippi 38821 - (662) 257-1128

In late May 2003, Rick Stivers and I were on a business trip to Columbus, Mississippi.

We flew into Birmingham, Alabama and then rented a car for the drive to Columbus. The sky was overcast and we encountered occasional patches of drizzle. Every creek, stream and river that we drove over seemed to be swollen with rain. The water running fast and angry beneath the bridges.

We arrived in Columbus in the middle of the afternoon. After visiting the site of the old Fiesta Drive-In, we ate dinner and then headed to our hotel.

During a previous visit to Columbus, Rick Stivers and John Miller had discovered two drive-in theaters in the nearby area.

That night, we visited the Blue Moon Drive-In located in Gu-Win, Alabama. The next day, we returned to the Blue Moon for a photo session. On the way back to Columbus, Rick suggested we take a side trip to Amory, Mississippi, home of the 25 Drive-In.

As we were driving up Highway 25, Rick piqued my interest in the 25 Drive-In with a single simple statement - "This theater may look like a twin, but it isn't". What did he mean by that remark? Delighted by his secret knowledge, he refused to tell me.

One truth that I've discovered during my visits to drive-in theaters, open or closed, is that each one is unique. They all have a different story to tell. As we neared the 25 Drive-In, I could only wonder what tale it had to tell me!

Below, and on the pages that follow, you'll find a selection of the pictures that I took during our visit to the 25 Drive-In. I hope you enjoy them.

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Although we approached the 25 Drive-In from the south, I think this view from the north makes for a better "first impression" of the property.

The marquee is no more than ten feet from the edge of Highway 25. You can just make out a small portable advertising sign sitting next to the screen. On the far right, inside the lot, is our rental car. If I recall correctly, we parked in the second row from the screen.

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As you can see, the 25 Drive-In is a "first run" theater. If my records are correct, this was the second week of release for "The Matrix Reloaded". Did "The Matrix Reloaded" open in the local in-door theater and then move outdoors? A strong possibility as both theaters are owned by the same company.

Note the standing water beneath the marquee.

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"Ignore the man behind the marquee!"

Moving carefully across the wet grass, I've now moved directly behind the marquee. As you can see, it is of recent construction and is far newer than the rest of the property.

From this vantage point, the true size of the pool of standing water is revealed!

The electrical wires running across the top of the marquee provide power to the lights on the other side. Could that be the power switch on the far left side just below the top crossbeam?

Looking at this picture now, I can't see how the electrical power actually reaches the sign. There don't appear to be any wires running down any of the main vertical supports.

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Turning around, I took this closeup of the advertising sign.

I personally have a problem with hosting flea markets or similar events at drive-in theaters. Why? I believe it "cheapens" the property in the minds of the public. Beyond that, I see potential problems with clutter and trash. Fortunately, if yard sales are a regular event at the 25 Drive-In, they have found a way to deal with these problems. The property shows no signs of such activities other than this sign.

At the bottom left of the sign, there is a coil of electrical wire similar to the wire on the marquee.

Behind the advertising sign is the screen. The frame of the screen is constructed of welded steel pipe. At first glance, there isn't anything unusual about its design and construction. But, let's look just a bit closer...

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The screen currently in use at the 25 Drive-In came from another drive-in theater in the area. More on that later! Notice how the main screen supports are literally "pinned" to steel bars set in concrete. Note the large gap between the bottom of the screen support and the ground beneath it. Even if we didn't know this screen came from another location, this would be a big clue to that fact!

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Although this main support is closer to the ground, if you look closely, you'll see that it too is being held up by the steel pin pushed through it.

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