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Drive-in movie theater
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Where to find drive-in movie theaters near Chicago

See a film on the big screen from inside your car at drive-in movie theaters in and around Chicago.

By Zach Long

You can't see a flick at one of the best movie theaters in Chicago right now, but warm summer weather and some entrepreneurial spirit are reviving cinema from the comfort of your car. Drive-in movie theaters near Chicago offer an opportunity to see the best movies of all time on a giant screen without having to sit next to a stranger. You can jump in a car with friends and make the journey north to the classic McHenry Outdoor Theatre or drive to Pilsen, where a makeshift drive-in is being hosted by an indoor soccer complex. Most drive-in movie theaters near Chicago charge by the car, prohibit alcoholic beverages and require guests to wear a face covering when leaving their vehicles—call ahead for more details if you're unsure about anything.

Drive-in theaters near Chicago

ChiTown Movies

Taking over a portion of the ChiTown Futbol complex, ChiTown Movies brings the drive-in theater experience to Pilsen. With two screenings every night, groups of up to five adults can park and take in a flick projected on a big screen. Tune into the film's audio via FM radio, order concessions from the ChiTown Grille (delivered to your car) and bring a face covering for trips to the indoor restrooms.

2343 South Throop St. $33 per car (5 adults, $5 for each additional adult)

CHI-Together Drive-In at Soldier Field

A local events company (Fueled Events) is behind this pop-up entertainment destination in a Soldier Field parking lot, which will screen movies Wednesday through Sunday, accompanied by pre-show DJ sets, live music and contests. There's enough room for 375 cars (or groups of up to six pedestrians) spaced eight feet apart from one another. Admission include a bucket of popcorn and $1 from each ticket sold will be donated to the Greater Chicago Food Depository.

1410 S Museum Campus Dr. $55


Drive-in at Lincoln Yards

Programmed with the help of Lincoln Sqaure's Davis Theater and local arthouse cinema Facets (and with proceeds benefiting each theater), this pop-up in the future site of Lincoln Yards only accepts 30 cars, with screenings at 8:30pm on Thursday through Sunday. The smaller capacity allows for more distance between cars and gives guests the ability to bring their own chairs and watch the film outside their vehicle. Nearby restaurant Ada Street and Bucktown's Mellos Peanuts & Popcorn offer tasty treat to enjoy while taking in classics like Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.

1684 N Throop St. $35

Chicago Drive-In Theater (Bridgeview)

Head to a parking lot just outside of SeatGeek Stadium in Bridgeview to watch a movie on a 70-foot screen at Chicago Drive-In Theater, which has room for 300 cars. There's a family-friendly 8:30pm screening each night, but Friday and Saturday nights also boast midnight showings of adult-oriented films like Reservoir Dogs and Superbad. Sound is broadcast via FM radio and concessions and restrooms are available on-site (just bring a face covering to wear outside of your car).

7000 S Harlem Ave Bridgeview, IL. $30–$50


Chicago Drive-In Theater (Hoffman Estates)

The folks behind the Chicago Drive-In Theater in Bridgeview have opened a second location at the Sears Centre Arena in the northern suburb of Hoffman Estates. Much like the other pop-up, films are projected on a 70-foot screen, audio is broadcast via FM radio and concessions are available for purchase. Movies screen Monday through Saturday at 9pm, with R-rated midnight screenings on Fridays and Saturdays.

5333 Prairie Stone Parkway Hoffman Estates, IL. $30–$50.

McHenry Outdoor Theatre

Dating back to the 1950s, this drive-in theater has survived through the decades—long enough to become one of the only places to see a movie. Gates open no later than 6:30pm each day and tickets are first come, first served, but thankfully the McHenry Outdoor Theater has room for 350 cars. Movies begin at sundown and every night is a double feature of classic films. There are concessions, restrooms and plenty of handwashing stations on-site. 

1510 Chapel Hill Rd McHenry, IL. $12, seniors/children $6


Movies at Mistwood Golf Club

Located just to the north of Joliet, the Mistwood Golf Club screens films at a parking lot drive-in theater on Tuesday, Friday and Saturday nights throughout the summer. Titles are announced every Sunday on the Mistwood Golf Club Facebook page, accompanied by ticket links. Each ticket package is accompanied by popcorn and beverages, and food from nearby McWenthy's Taven can be ordered during the show.

1700 W Renwick Rd Romeoville, IL. $30–$50

Popcorn and Drive-in Movies at Burr Ridge Village Center

This outdoor shopping mall in suburban Burr Ridge, located around 20 miles southwest of downtown, is screening a drive-in movie in its parking lot once a month at 7pm through October—late enough in the year to catch spooky favorites like Hocus Pocus. Order a ticket ahead of time to claim your spot; attendees can also order food from the mall's participating restaurants directly to their vehicles, carhop-style, via a dashboard numbering system.


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