Northside Drive-In

5400 2nd Street NW,
Albuquerque, NM 87107

500 cars

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Frontier Theatres

Previous Names: Star Drive-In, Linda Vista Drive-In

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Northside Drive-In

The Star Drive-In was opened on July 27, 1949 when it was operated by Tom E. Ribble of the New Mexico Theatres Association. Listed in the Film Daily Yearbooks of (at least) 1956, 1964 & 1968. It was closed on December 20, 1968.

It reopened in 1969 as the Linda Vista Drive-In. On July 25, 1986 it was renamed Northside Drive-In. It was closed on November 12, 1988.

Contributed by A.L. Vazquez-Hernandez

Recent comments (view all 8 comments)

MichaelKilgore
MichaelKilgore on April 1, 2019 at 8:21 pm

This clipping at Newspapers.com shows that the Star had its Grand Opening on July 27, 1949.

The latest note I could find in the Albuquerque Journal was Dec. 20, 1968. It said that the Star, then showing Spanish-language films, would “close after this weekend.” (For the season?) Burglars stole two projection lenses according to a March 12, 1969 article.

Historic Aerials shows the drive-in still intact in 1981 but leveled by 1991.

MichaelKilgore
MichaelKilgore on April 19, 2019 at 2:04 pm

The Albuquerque Journal ran ads for Spanish-language films showing at the Linda Vista Drive-In at the Star’s old address in 1981-1983 (at least).

MichaelKilgore
MichaelKilgore on April 19, 2019 at 2:41 pm

The July 11, 1987 Albuquerque Journal had an ad “Always $5 per car load” for the Northside Drive-In at “2nd & Montano”, which is the closest intersection to the former Star. English-language movies this time.

MichaelKilgore
MichaelKilgore on July 29, 2019 at 12:12 pm

From the Feb. 4, 1956 issue of BoxOffice: “Martin Butler has bought the Star Drive-In, Albuquerque, and has added it to his Tesque (sic) and Sunset drive-ins. He bought it from T. E. Ribble.”

MichaelKilgore
MichaelKilgore on February 1, 2020 at 5:03 pm

Boxoffice, July 30, 1962: “Albuquerque Theatres … is going back into the drive-in business, with announcement that it plans to remodel two closer outdoor theatres. The local circuit, a part of Frontier Theatres of Dallas, will reopen the Star Drive-In here in late August and the 66 Drive-In early next spring. The circuit has been out of the drive-in business for about four years. The Star Drive-In, which has been closed about a year since a windstorm blew down its screen, will require about $19,000 worth of work, according to the general announcement from Louis C. Gasparini, resident manager of Albuquerque Theatres. The Star will reopen about August 27.”

Boxoffice, Oct. 1, 1962: “Albuquerque Theatres just completed a $30,000 remodeling job on the Star Drive-In and reopened in September 19.”

MichaelKilgore
MichaelKilgore on February 5, 2020 at 7:22 am

Looks like this drive-in spent its final ~15 years as the Linda Vista.

Boxoffice, Aug. 4, 1969: “The opening of the Linda Vista Drive-In, 5400 Second NW, was highlighted by a live show … The theatre is the former Star Theatre. Mel Sanchez is owner.”

MichaelKilgore
MichaelKilgore on April 19, 2021 at 8:48 pm

In a March 3, 1969, Boxoffice article detailing how Commonwealth-Frontier was preparing most of its Albuquerque drive-ins to open that spring, city manager Lou Avolio said that “C-F’s other outdoor house, the Star Drive-In, is not scheduled to reopen under the chain’s management since the lease runs out on May 1”.

MichaelKilgore
MichaelKilgore on April 12, 2022 at 9:38 am

Since CT uses a theater’s final name in its entry, this drive-in of several lives probably ought to be the Northside. Although it ran a tiny one-column ad the day before, here’s a better ad from the Northside’s opening weekend.

Northside Drive-Inn opening weekend ad (drive-in theater)Northside Drive-Inn opening weekend ad (drive-in theater) 25 Jul 1986, Fri Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, New Mexico) Newspapers.com

An article in the Sept. 16, 1986 Journal said that former Video Independent Theaters employees Curtis and Melinda Ralston were behind the drive-in restoration. They put in FM radio sound before opening and were planning to add a playground and picnic tables for the 1987 season.

The last Northside ad I could find was on Nov. 12, 1988.

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