Suburban Drive-In

4210 14th Street W.,
Bradenton, FL 34205

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: General Cinema Corp.

Previous Names: Suburban Open Air Theatre

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Suburban Drive-In

The Suburban Open Air Theatre opened on September 28, 1950 with Joel McCrea in “Stars in My Crown”. It was operated by Blake Lancaster and in 1955 it was owned and operated by David R. Brown and Exhibitors Services Company from Jacksonville, FL. Its parking ramp could hold 490 cars. It was expanded to hold 600 car in 1955. On October 3, 1955, David R. Brown died and the drive-in theatre remained open. The Suburban Open Air Theatre was closed on December 8, 1956.

It reopened as the Suburban Drive-In in May 1960. I believe it was bought by Super 50 Theatre Corp. (Iselin Theatres from Albany, NY). They were listed as owners in 1956. Iselin Theatres also owned and operated the Trail Drive-In at that time. In early-1967, General Cinemas Corporation was the operator of both the Suburban Drive-In and the Trail Drive-In. The Super 50 Theatre Corp. (Iselin Theatres) closed the Suburban Drive-In in November 1969 and the property was sold to Casto Development from North Miami. The former Suburban Drive-In is now a Best Buy and Lowes Home Improvement store.

Contributed by Randy Studer, Ken McIntyre

Recent comments (view all 9 comments)

TLSLOEWS on June 4, 2010 at 12:16 pm

Nice photos Chuck.

starwarskid77 on August 17, 2010 at 10:17 am

Was this theater located on the corner prior to where the old Kmart was?

NYozoner on January 24, 2011 at 10:08 am

U.S. 41 & Cortez Rd W, Bradenton, FL 34207

The above address will map accurately to the location of the drive-in. The heading address is off by several blocks to the east.

Here is a 1969 aerial photo of the drive-in, courtesy of

jwmovies on December 11, 2012 at 1:08 pm

Approx. address for this drive-in was 4210 14th Street West. Now Best Buy.

dallasmovietheaters on April 1, 2021 at 7:58 am

Opened as the Suburban Open-Air Theatre on September 28, 1950 with “Stars in My Crown"by Manatee Amusement Company.

MichaelKilgore on May 5, 2021 at 7:37 pm

Boxoffice, May 2, 1960: “Wright Sanders has shuttered his Suburban Drive-In, Quincy”

Boxoffice, April 15, 1963: “The Suburban Open Air Drive-In, Bradenton, long operated by veteran showman K. T. Barfield, was acquired by Alan Iselin (April 5) as the newest unit in his growing circuit of Florida outdoorers.”

MichaelKilgore on March 21, 2023 at 8:25 pm

Boxoffice, Oct. 14, 1950: “Featuring opening night ceremonies at the Suburban Drive-In was the presentation of a $50 prize to J. P. Heineckie who named the theatre in a public contest judged by mayors of three nearby cities. The Suburban is owned and operated by Johnny Mitchell, Blake Lancaster and David R. Brown of the Manatee Amusement Co. The new theatre accommodates 600 cars with space available for about 125 more. An interesting feature of the new theatre is a nursery and a first aid station built below the screen. A doctor will be present at all times. The theatre will maintain a constant drive for charity. Two cents of each admission will be put in a fund for a worthy charity and will be distributed on a rotation basis. Admission is 40 cents, plus 8 cents state and federal tax and the 2 cents for charity. The grounds have been beautifully landscaped.”

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