Coral Way Drive-In

SW 24th Street and 70th Avenue,
Miami, FL 33155

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Wometco Theatres

Architects: A. Herbert Mathes

Previous Names: Coral Way Auto Theatre

Nearby Theaters

Coral Way Drive-In

The Coral Way Auto Theatre was opened on February 22, 1949 with June Allyson in “Good News”. It was operated by Edward J. Melniker. From 1954, it was operated by Wometco Theatres chain and had a capacity for 600 cars. It was closed on October 8, 1978 with Charles Bronson in “From Noon til Theatre” & Peter Sellers in “Revenge of the Pink Panther”. It was demolished in 1979 for a shopping center.

Contributed by Eric harvey

Recent comments (view all 17 comments)

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on January 19, 2010 at 5:44 am

Boxoffice of March 5, 1949, said that the Coral Way Drive-In had been opened. Wometco took over operation in 1954. In 1955 the circuit had the drive-in rebuilt to plans by architect A. Herbert Mathes. His design was the subject of this article in Boxoffice of October 22, 1955.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on August 21, 2010 at 8:19 am

Good 1977 ad,see “THE CHEERLEADERS” was cut to an R Rating.

NYozoner
NYozoner on January 26, 2011 at 7:33 pm

Here is a 1969 high resolution close-up photo of the drive-in, courtesy of Earth Explorer and USGS.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on September 8, 2011 at 3:00 pm

Near the end of our 1-year residency in Miami, my folks and I piled into the family car (a red 1968 Volvo) one evening in May of 1972 (likely on Saturday the 20th), and headed over to the Coral Way Drive-In to enjoy a triple feature consisting of “Godzilla Vs. The Smog Monster,” “The Incredible 2-Headed Transplant” and “The Return of Count Yorga!” This was likely the last of many such evenings at either the Coral Way, the Dixie or the Tropicaire drive-ins, as we departed back for New York City early that summer. I’ve been trying to nail down the exact date and location of that triple bill for many a moon, and that search finally came to an end today with a thorough scouring of the daily movie sections from Google.com’s online archive for The Miami News. In fact, for a long time I thought it was just a Godzilla/Yorga double feature and that 2-Headed Transplant was part of some other 2-headed attraction we had also seen – glad to have that clarified, as well. Anyway, thanks again for the hot lead, AlAlvarez!

jdoc001
jdoc001 on May 16, 2013 at 11:54 pm

this theater was eventually demolished as the surrounding property was turned into apartment complexes

davidcoppock
davidcoppock on October 21, 2018 at 1:03 am

Swap meet opened in 1970. Site is now a Cuban restaurant(El Palacio de los Jugos).

David_Schneider
David_Schneider on May 14, 2019 at 1:48 pm

I believe the former location of the Coral Way Drive-in holds a Braman Honda car dealership and the Futura Gables Condominiums behind it.

Compare the overhead photo in the photos section with the Google satellite image for the car dealership (7000 Coral Way): The railroad right-of-way is on the right (today with the tracks removed), Coral Way is at the top, and the vertical rectangular building in the lower right corner is still there just outside the drive-in/dealership property line with trees above it that may date back to the drive-in. The condominium and its parking lot take up the lower left quadrant of the drive-in.

So the place is still about parked cars, just not movies. :)

While making plans to visit the new Wawa next to the El Palacio de los Jugos restaurant and across Coral Way from the car dealership I checked Cinema Treasures for any listings in the area, and found one for this drive-in right in the vicinity! When I saw the photo of the overhead shot I knew I could use the railroad right-of-way to match to the current satellite image, then noticed the other details.

While at the Wawa on 5/11/2019 during opening week crowds the only spot I found outside to rest and eat my sandwich had me facing a full view of the dealership/former drive-in property, which was appropriate for me. I tried to imagine what movie-goers may have experienced there and wondered if anyone else visiting the Wawa will ever do the same.

I then crossed Coral Way and walked the sidewalks around the edges of the dealership and condo parking lot. I did not recognize any traces of its drive-in days, other than maybe the tall trees still arranged in a right angle in the lower right corner of the property, that looked old enough to be a remnant.

David_Schneider
David_Schneider on May 25, 2019 at 11:40 am

I enjoy coincidences, which I experience frequently. I had never heard anyone verbally mention the Coral Way Drive-in before, then on 5/19 a few days after I posted the comment above about visiting the Wawa, I came across a broadcast of a sermon by local Pastor Steve Alessi. He says when he was young his church required that he avoid pop culture including movies, then mentions that his family eventually chose to ease into the movie-going experience by seeing “101 Dalmatians” at a drive-in on Coral Way.

He then describes having watched movies from outside the fence at the Tropicaire Drive-in because he had figured not being on the inside is like not attending in compliance with his church’s rules. : )

Click here for a link to a video of his presentation set to begin at about the time the subject comes up.

rivest266
rivest266 on January 26, 2020 at 8:50 am

The Coral Way Auto Theatre opened on February 22nd, 1949 with “Good News” and a band concert given by the Ponce de Leon high school. Small grand opening ad posted.

dallasmovietheaters
dallasmovietheaters on September 29, 2022 at 11:12 am

Closed on October 8, 1978 with Charles Bronson in “From Noon Till Three” and Peter Sellers in “Revenge of the Pink Panther.” Wometco then sold the Coral Way to investors for a proposed shopping center. The C.W.-D.I. was razed in 1979.

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