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I-70 Drive-In Theater to close before winter

A Kansas City drive-in icon that provided entertainment to area families for decades will not reopen after the current season. The I-70 Drive-In theater will be shuttered by new owners B&B Theaters.

On Friday, the movie theater company released confirmation saying, “I-70 will not reopen,” adding that “the Twin will remain in operation.”

“Despite making major financial investments in the property, an arrangement could not be reached and continued operation was not sustainable,” their release said.

The closure means there will be only two drive-in theaters left in the metro.

B&B Theatres owns several indoor theaters as well as the Twin Drive-In, which remains open in Independence. The Twin Drive-In’s two screens are featuring “The Nun,” “Disney’s Christopher Robin,” “The Meg” and “The Incredibles 2” Saturday and Sunday evenings.

The Boulevard Drive-In also remains open in Kansas City, Kan., with “The First Purge” and “The Nun” showing Saturday nights.

Wes Neal, owner of the one-screen Boulevard Drive-In, said he believed the I-70 Drive-In was financially successful. Like others, I-70 Drive-In had made the transition to digital projection of movies.

B&B Theatres  stated, “We are proud of the time we spent as operators and grateful for the valued tradition the I-70 enjoyed in the Kansas City area.”

The drive-in theater industry has shrunk substantially, but many of its operators will gather at the Boulevard Drive-In this November. Neal said this will be the first time that the annual fall gathering of the United Drive-In Theater Owners Association of America will be held west of the Mississippi River.