Dawson County Block & PFS Partner for Drive-In Movie Nights
By: Allison Agostino (BG) & Stacey O’Tremba (PFS)
During this difficult time of quarantining Dawson County has really taken to online communication and finding new ways to come together as a community. The Dawson Discussion page on Facebook has become a great resource for community members to share ideas, make plans, and support one another. At the beginning of the quarantine an idea was posted to the discussion page to begin a drive-in movie theater as a way to still have family fun in the community while maintaining safe social distancing. Two community members jumped on the idea right away and began planning the event. Initially the drive-in night was a small, one-time event, but after reaching out and meeting together to collaborate, Prevention Specialists were able to help it grow. Both Block Grant and Partnership for Success in Dawson County, along with the coalition, community members and local business owners, have planned to host drive-in movie nights at the local movie theater for free to the community throughout the summer.
The drive-in movie night will be a great drug and alcohol-free social event for the community. We will be able to use the event as an outlet to share prevention materials, tie in other activities like a Lego building competition for kids over the summer, and advertise other events like a Hidden in Plain Sight room. We are also able to collaborate with different groups in town like our Behavioral Health Local Advisory Council and the Dawson County Healthy Communities Coalition. We hope that these collaborations will allow for more growth within the event, as well as provide groups with the opportunity to interact with the community. By working with a broad spectrum of people we will be able to build great sustainability to the movie night, as well as help our local groups raise community awareness and involvement in their own activities.
The first movie night will be held on June 26th in the parking lot of the local movie theater, which owners Joe and Dee Rose have graciously agreed to host. This night also happens to be the annual local vintage car show, so the owners attending the car show will also be welcome to bring their vintage cars to the movie theater and watch the movie. In theme with the idea of vintage cars at the drive-in movie theater, the movie chosen to play is American Graffiti. All of the materials needed, movie licenses, and advertisement are either being donated or purchased through prevention grants, and construction of the screen was all completed by a local community member. Donations and volunteers will allow us to host ten or more drive-in movie nights for free and movie snacks can be purchased inside the movie theater.
The drive-in movie nights are an alternative event from the original public movie nights planned by the Block Grant prevention specialist to be hosted at the local library this summer. Due to quarantine the public movie nights needed to be canceled, so the drive-in movie night was planned as a safe option to replace the public movie nights. The library has also been affected by the quarantine threatening possible closure, so everyone working on the drive-in theater has decided to set up donations during the event to allow community members to give to the local library. Everyone involved hopes that the drive-in movie night will be able to provide the community with a safe, fun event over the summer. We also hope that with the large number of community interest and involvement that we can build a sustainable event that continues every summer.