The Cottage View Drive-In...

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Drive-in movie theaters leave a lasting impression for anybody who has participated in the experience. 

Whether it was as child in your pajamas who sat in the back seat of their parent's car, or as a teenager trying to sneak in by hiding in the trunk, drive-in movie theaters are all about last memories.

Drive-ins are disappearing from the American landscape.  At the peak of their popularity in the 1940's and 1950's, there were 4,500 drive-ins in the United States.  As of the end of 2011, there were only 370 remaining. 

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The Cottage View Drive-In is one of two that remains in the Twin Cities and probably at the highest risk for closing.  It is a popular movie venue, but it is in a prime real estate development area and it is probably only a matter of time before it succumbs to the bulldozers.   

The good news is that it was announced last month that they will be open for 2012. 

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The first stop in entering the drive-in is the ticket booth building.If you are a teenager, this is where you can expect to have your trunk examined and any alcohol confiscated. 

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It is also where you will be reminded of the rules.

The Cottage View opened in 1966 and is a large drive-in, relative to most drive-ins.  It can accommodate 950 cars (close to 10 acres) and uses short range AM and FM signals for the audio delivery.

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It is easy to see the development pressure on the Cottage View.  New home construction is right up to the drive-in screen and the land is mostly flat and easy to develop. There is speculation that WalMart has an option to purchase and develop this property.

The old speaker stands still exist and probably helps organize the parking.