3230 S. Park Road,
3230 S. Park Road,Tucson, AZ 85702
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Wes Becker and Hugh Downs of the Cactus Drive-In had a great notion to start a Mexico City-centric Spanish Language drive-in at 3230 S. Park Road. On March 21, 1952, La Fiesta Drive-In Theatre — a 400 car drive-in was having its gran inauguración with “Dueña y señora” and “el Muchaacho Alegre.” Mi Cafetal was ready with free ice cream for the opening as well as tamales. The policy lasted for nine months when the drive-in went with Spanish language just three days a week and art films — primarily foreign language films in German, French and Italian — four days a week.
That didn’t work so well either so in December of 1953, the drive-in create a new, more traditional snack bar and had new rest rooms installed re-launching with more standard American double features. The drive-in pulls out all the stops running five features on some nights. But it’s not enough and in June of 1954, the Fiesta is back to Hispanic fare with some English language mixed in on weekends. In October of 1963, it’s again out with the Spanish language fare and back to exploitation and popular priced double features in English. In December of 1964, the theater switches back to Spanish language fare.
On August 16, 1966, the Fiesta starts an all-adult English language program which is then scaled back to popular price double features with one adult feature on weekends and mixing in Spanish language films on weekdays. Following the September 19, 1966 showings, the theater is listed as “closed until further notice.” There was no further notice.
Here’s an early advertisement from its opening year (possibly even its grand opening ad):http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:1dhiubve0owJ:newspaperarchive.com/us/arizona/tucson/tucson-daily-citizen/1953/10-19/page-28+&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us
Aerial photo is at