Saco drive-in appeals to community for help

7:15 PM, Feb 15, 2013   |    comments
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SACO, Maine (NEWS CENTER) - In Saco you can still listen to the movies on the giant outdoor screens, but now it looks like that could become a faded memory if one local drive-in doesn't get some much needed help.

The same intermission films have been running for decades at drive-ins around the country. Now, the happy hot dog is at risk because movie studios plan to stop making film and go 100 percent digital. It's a move expected to save distributors a billion dollars a year.

Ry Russell runs the Saco drive-in...the second oldest operating drive-in theater in the country. It's a shrinking club. There are fewer than
400 drive-ins across America..there used to be thousands. Maine once had 47....that number is down to 5. More could shut down
unless they are willing to make the expensive switch to digital. Many of the larger, indoor movie theaters have already made the switch to
digital. Most drive-in's have not, it's a major expense for a summer business that just breaks even.

Russell is hoping that sense of nostalgia and history will help him raise the money he needs to go digital, turning to the community of Saco for help. Russell has started a Save our Drive-In campaign on Facebook. He's planning fundraisers and seeking historic grants to help come up with the money.

Russell says coming up with that cash is the only way to keep the Saco Drive-in open, he's hoping the community will want to save it as much as he does.

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