Guide to Drive-In Movie Theaters In & Around Northeast Florida

drive-in movieWhen we first wrote this blog post, it was during the pandemic when people craved the open air of a good drive-in. Now that folks are enjoying the cool AC inside movie theaters again — not to mention inflation hurting small businesses — many drive-ins have closed their lots. Late last year, the beloved local Sun-Ray Cinema shut down its drive-in theater behind Ramona Flea Market.

But if sitting in your car and watching a giant screen — while enjoying a bucket of fresh popcorn topped with warm butter and a couple of boxes of Raisinets and Sno-Caps — brings back nostalgic memories, then check out the drive-in movie theaters that are still going strong throughout Florida and the First Coast. (Yes, some are even as far as Miami!) Be sure to check online or call first to confirm hours and showtimes before heading out.

drive-in movies
The Ocala Drive-In is open seven nights a week. Photo courtesy of Vic Micolucci.

Ocala Drive-In

Website  |  Facebook
4850 S. Pine Avenue, Ocala, Florida 34480
(352) 629-1325

Open seven nights a week including all holidays regardless if it’s raining or not. Admission is $6 per adult, $3 per child (6–12 years old), and children 5 and under are free. Cash preferred. No outside food is allowed unless you have an offsite food permit for $10.

Silver Moon Drive-In Theatre

Website  |  Facebook
4100 New Tampa Highway, Lakeland, Florida 33815
(863) 682-0849

A local favorite, this drive-in has been in Lakeland for more than 75 years! It is open seven nights a week including holidays. Admission is $8 per adult, $3 per child (4–9 years old), and children 3 and under are free. You pay as you enter the theater. No advance tickets can be purchased. New movie schedules start on Fridays.

Joy-Lan Drive-In Theatre

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16414 U.S. 301, Dade City, Florida 33523
(352) 567-5085

The Joy-Lan Drive-In Theatre opened on October 31, 1950, and it’s still in working condition! Open seven nights a week for the summer. Admission is $8 per adult, $3 per child (4–9 years old), and children 3 and under are free. Gates open 30 minutes before showtime. Leashed and well-behaved pets are welcome. The snack bar is available; check online for the menu.

Ruskin Family Drive-In Theatre

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5011 U.S. Highway 41 North, Ruskin, Florida 33572
(813) 645-1455

This family-oriented drive-in theatre is open year-round, rain or shine, and shows two movies a night. Admission is $7 per adult (this includes both movies), $2 per child (5–8 years old), and children 4 and under are free. Cash only. The snack bar is open, but outside food and beverages are permitted for an additional $5 per car. Alcohol is prohibited.

Nite Owl Drive-In Theatre

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1400 NE First Avenue, Miami, FL 33132
(833) 648-3695

Check out downtown Miami’s first drive-in movie theater! Tickets are only sold through their website. Admission starts at $19.99 for one vehicle, and it includes one adult only. Extra adult passengers are an additional $19.99. Extra child passengers (12 and under) are an additional $9.99. You can use your car radio to hear the film or rent a personal audio device for an additional fee. Beach/camping chair rental is also available for sitting outside your car. Must rent in advance when buying your admission ticket. No walk-ins, and they do not sell tickets on-site. Alcohol is prohibited.

Treasure Coast Park and Watch

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Causeway Cove Marina, 601 Seaway Drive, Fort Pierce, FL 34949
(772) 222-7570

Open on Fridays and Saturdays only. Admission is $15 per vehicle. The concession stand is open, and outside food and drinks are not permitted. Parking is first come, first serve. Be sure to check their Facebook page first to see if the movie is postponed before heading out that way. (Closed for maintenance, will reopen in February 2024.)

Jesup Drive-In Theatre

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3686 Savannah Highway, Jesup, Georgia 31545
(912) 427-7254

Georgia’s oldest drive-in movie theatre is two hours away from Jacksonville. It is open Thursday through Sunday only and shows two movies each night. All tickets are $5 per person and can be purchased online only. The box office cannot sell a ticket. If bringing outside food or beverages, you can purchase a food permit for an additional $5 online. Follow the directions online when purchasing tickets. A movie ticket allows you to see both movies, the first and second features. (Closed for the winter, will reopen in March 2024.)

The following Florida drive-in theaters are now permanently CLOSED: Sun-Ray Cinema, Lake Worth Drive-In & Swap Shop, Fort Lauderdale Swap Shop & Drive-In, Tampa Funlan Swap Shop & Drive-In.

Please comment below with any additional drive-in theaters we may have missed!

Corinna Hoffman
Jacksonville University alumna, Corinna Hoffman is a professional family and baby photographer working at her studio located in Riverside. She is a Yankees fan married to a Red Sox fan by choice. Corinna and her husband, Robert, are both passionate about their baseball teams just as much as they are with the Jacksonville Jaguars! They have been married for 17 years now and have two boys, Lincoln and Lochlan. When she is not photographing other people’s children, she is always taking photos of her kids as you can tell by her Instagram posts. They like to support all things local. Find them at a mom and pop's restaurant, brewery, or family events like the Jacksonville Icemen hockey and Jumbo Shrimp baseball games. They love the outdoors and camping so you might also find them hiking the nature trails in town!

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