918 6th Street,
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Previous Names: Sunset Drive-In
The tiny Sunset Drive-In was built by Edsel Cavasos, who opened it with 100 in-car speakers and promised to add more when needed, according to a note in the March 26, 1949 issue of Boxoffice.
Just 11 weeks later, Cavasos was advertising the Sunset Drive-In for sale in a Boxoffice classified advertisement. “100-car drive-in with in-car speakers. Up and coming town of 6,000. Only one small theatre in town. New Mexico School of Mines located in town; 600x600 ft. plot on which theatre is built is leased with good, long lease.”
On October 8, 1949, Boxoffice reported that “Owner Jack Wills says that weather conditions and construction difficulty have made it impossible to reopen the local drive-in this season. Three attempts have been made previously to complete remodeling of the theatre.” Wills owned the indoor Loma Theatre in Socorro.
In July 22, 1950, Boxoffice wrote about a projection booth fire at the “Star-Lite Drive-In” in Socorro, “owned and operated by Edsell Casavos.“ (sic) Three weeks later, the magazine said that Cavasos had "rebuilt the projection booth, replaced missing speakers, and installed new projectors.” That’s the last note I could find about this drive-in. Cavasos opened a radio/TV repair shop in Hatch but passed away in 1957 at the age of 36.
An October 1950 USGS aerial photo showed an unusual circle driveway at present-day 918 6th Street leading to a long drive which looped around a square, cleared, mostly empty lot. A blurrier 1952 USGS photo showed the driveways intact and a possible screen at the southeast corner of the lot. A 1955 aerial showed the same circle drive leading to a auto junkyard. No trace of the drive-in remains today.
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