Lackland Drive-In

7188 Somerset Road,
San Antonio, TX 78211

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Gulf States Theatres, Santikos Theatres

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Lackland Drive-In

The Lackland Drive-In was opened on November 2, 1953 with Randolph Scott in “The Man Behind the Gun”. This ozoner had a 450 car capacity. From 1967 until it closed in 1982 it played adult movies. Since demolished it is now the site of a Sam Warehouse Club.

Contributed by Chuck Van Bibber

Recent comments (view all 10 comments)

lyssa751 on March 16, 2005 at 4:42 pm

What’s odd is that there was an elementary school very close by to the area. Good thing was they had many lights around the area facing out towards the street, so that no one could see into the screen and parking area on the X-rated movies.

Jim Miller
Jim Miller on July 3, 2006 at 10:05 am

The Lackland’s screen sat high on a berm. It’s screen was easily visible from many angles. Rather than build a fence to keep passers-by from seeing the X rated films being shown on it’s screen, 88 very bright halogen lights were mounted on poles around the theatre. The bright lights effectively hid the screen from everyone but people in the theatre itself.

The Lackland was built in 1953. It was one of the better built drive ins in San Antonio.

tramp116 on December 7, 2009 at 3:28 pm

I remember this place from when I was stationed at Kelly AFB in 79. They were showing porn at that time As porn was generally against the law everywhere in Texas in the late 70’s, San Antonio did not allow porn to be shown within the city limits. This theater hired a guy to stand in front of the projection booth with 2 paddles. The paddle guy’s job was to cast a shadow across the screen, blanking out the “offensive” parts of the scenes. A bunch of us, men & women, used to load up & go to the movies, not to watch the porn flicks but to watch this poor guy do a dance to keep his paddle shadows moving on the screen. I swear he was a gymnast or or a contortionist. Can you image doing this non-stop for 60-90 minutes at a crack?
contortionist. Can you image doing this non-stop for 60-90 minutes at a crack?
or a contortionist. Can you image doing this non-stop for 60-90 minutes at a crack?

jwmovies on October 17, 2012 at 1:49 pm

Above address is incorrect. Approx. address for this drive-in was 7188 Somerset Road, San Antonio, TX 78224. Sam’s Club (at least the building was there when the drive-in closed) is north of where the theatre stood.

The entrance was where Specialty Prosthetics is located now. The buildings SE of this location and west of the post office is where the drive-in was located.

Jim Miller
Jim Miller on December 20, 2015 at 8:50 pm

There is no way someone could place a paddle in front of the ports in the projection room unless he was 12+ feet tall. The Lackland was one of the first drive ins built with the projection room atop the snack bar. There were certain things that could not be shown, but those scenes were cut out of the film and placed back in at the end of the run.

davidcoppock on November 10, 2019 at 4:27 am

The guy with the paddles could have climbed up on the roof of the snack bar?

MichaelKilgore on November 17, 2019 at 12:00 am

Billboard, Oct. 23, 1954: “Sale of two drive-in theaters in San Antonio for $275,000 has been reported by Thurman Barrett Jr., owner-operator. Buyer is Lone Star Theaters, Inc., Dallas, owned by Pack-Murchison interests. The theaters are the Lackland and the Kelly.”

rivest266 on January 12, 2020 at 3:45 pm

Opened on November 2nd, 1953 with “Man Behind the Gun”. Only the regular listing appeared.

rivest266 on January 17, 2020 at 5:41 pm

Closed in 1982. Was owned by Gulf States theatres and Santikos from 1973 until it closed. Adult movies 1967-1982.

Ripshin on May 11, 2022 at 7:27 pm

jw is correct, that Military street number is not the address of the former drive-in. Just compare Google Maps to the historical aerial view map posted with the photographs. Sam’s is north of where the theater existed.

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