An online campaign sponsored by a major carmaker could be just the thing to savea pair oflocal drive-in movie theaters.
The Blue Sky Drive-In in Wadsworth and Lynn Auto Theater in Strasburg face a similar struggle. The theaters are being forced to convert from film projectors to digital ones, as studios discontinue shipments of film reels at the end of the year.
Some theaters have already closed because they cannot raise the funds necessary to upgrade.
One local success story has been North Ridgeville's Aut-O-Rama, which was able to finance the conversion onits own.
Not all theaters are so lucky.
Blue Sky Drive-In was built in 1947 and has been in constant operation since. It remains a regular attraction for the community and even features a playground -- complete with swings, slides and a merry-go-round.
Opening in 1937, Lynn Auto Theatre is the oldest drive-in in Ohio and the second oldest in the world. It has been under its current ownership since 1957 and is a true family owned and operated business. One family member runs the projector, two others run the box office, and the children run the concession stand.
Enter the American branch of Honda Motors.
The company's new initiative "Project Drive-In" originally aimed to help rescue five drive-ins. However, thanks to additional pledges and donations, the project will be able to save four more theaters, bringing to total to nine.
Those original five winners have already been announced.
Winners of the additional four approximately $80,000 upgrade grant will be named Monday at 9 a.m.
To support Wadsworth's Blue Sky Drive-In, you can text "Vote53" to 444999 or vote online at http://projectdrivein.com/#vote_53. You may vote once by each methodper day, so you can cast additional votes each day.
To support Strasburg's Lynn Auto Theatre, you can text "Vote81" to 444999 or online at http://projectdrivein.com/#vote_81. You may vote once by each method per day, so you can cast additional votes each day.
If you want to donate to the efforts and make a pledge, visit http://projectdrivein.com/.