The Rise and Fall of the Local Cinemas Business

Let's be honest with ourselves; it's finally Summer. The heat has quashed our denial and convinced most of us to put in our air conditioners. And though the appeal of staying inside in the artificial cold is great, there are plenty of reasons to step foot outside as well. Summer has become movie season in America. Blockbusters are filling seats in movie cinemas across the US. But don't worry, if you have an affinity for fresh air, there are plenty of opportunities to get some.

An increasing number of cities have implemented movie screenings in outdoor parks. I can't think of a better enticement to getting up and out into the Summer air. These movies in the park are often free, which is good news for families looking for a value. There ain't no such thing as a free lunch though, so you'll have to pay your way by keeping bugs off yourself. There might be a dog or two running around as well, so be prepared for that as well. Don't go expecting to see the latest big budget films. Even so, there are often classic films that are required viewing on film nerds' lists.

One program in Los Angeles has turned the outdoor movie experience into a sort of open air fair. Sponsored by Showtime, these public screenings feature food trucks and live music in addition to movies like When Harry Met Sally and Jaws. Unfortunately, that series is not free of charge. I hope this is not the new trend; each movie ends up costing nearly as much as a ticket to a currently released film. This place also encourages people to bring their dogs. I love my pups, but I leave them at home for events like these.

Nearer to here, there are at least a couple places to catch movies outdoors free of extra charge, like O’neil Cinemas. Click this link to learn more. Hampton Beach will be screening movies right on the beach. There is a nearby playground, so drag your kids outside too! Alternatively, the Prescott Park Arts Festival in Portsmouth will be screening a film every Monday evening. Take the kids to see an 80s Fantasy masterpiece, The Neverending Story, on August 4th.

Want my advice? Stay inside the cold glow of a movie theater and see a blockbuster over the weekend. But make sure to get out once and a while and see a film outdoors with your kids.