Tascosa Drive-In

1999 Dumas Drive,
Amarillo, TX 79107

800 cars

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Tascosa Drive-in

Opened on May 2, 1952 with Charles Coburn in “The Highwayman” & Bill Elliott in “The Longhorn”. It was operated by W.O. Beardon who also operated the Trail Drive-In and Sunset Drive-In. The Tascosa Drive-In is located on the west side of Amarillo. It has a marquee that bridges two, square, tower like structures that are constructed of tin. Each tower had a large “T” on its front. Topping the marquee were large individual yellow letters spelling out TASCOSA.

Operating as a twin screen from June 16, 1967, it was closed by 1994. Part of the lot has now been sold off and is an RV park and the theatre operated with one screen, showing first run double feature programs. It was closed at the end of the season in October 2023. New owners hope to reopen the theatre.

Contributed by Don Lewis

Recent comments (view all 14 comments)

ronnwood
ronnwood on October 21, 2013 at 4:15 am

The screen shown and talked about here is the second or “South” screen as it was called when added to the drive-in back in ‘67. The original Tascosa screen was at the bottom of the hill where the RV park is now located at Dumas E-way and N 24th St. The original screen, which burned in the late '70s, was a classic, old, and quite impressive drive-in theater structure with a mural on the front. That screen was widened in the late '50s in order to show the bigger format films. There are photos available.

Chris1982
Chris1982 on October 9, 2014 at 1:01 am

The Tascosa Drive-In was listed as opening in 1953.

rivest266
rivest266 on June 13, 2015 at 10:41 am

June 16th, 1967 grand opening ad for 2nd screen in photo section

MichaelKilgore
MichaelKilgore on October 30, 2019 at 5:22 pm

In my book Drive-Ins of Route 66, I wrote that the Tascosa opened in May 1952. Looking back, I’m not sure exactly why I wrote that – probably a mention in a May or June 1952 trade magazine.

Anyway, here’s something new and different from the Aug. 16, 1952 issue of Billboard:

Operators of the Tascosa Drive-In Theater, Amarillo, Tex., W. O. Beardon and L. R. Doyal, were charged by the National Production Authority last week with “unlawfully” using copper wire in excess of authorized quantities to build the theater. One of the counts charged the theater operators with “false information regarding the amount of copper wire” used in its construction. Assistant General Counsel Robert Winn said it was the first time NPA has lodged any charges of alleged violations against anyone in Texas.

davidcoppock
davidcoppock on October 31, 2019 at 12:26 am

Why the name Tascosa?

davidcoppock
davidcoppock on April 11, 2020 at 12:48 pm

Opened as a twin on both screens with “Hells Angels on wheels” and “What did you do in the war daddy?”.

50sSNIPES
50sSNIPES on June 14, 2020 at 8:30 am

Yes I Believe The Property Of Land Later Went On Sale Next To A Trailer Park.

MichaelKilgore
MichaelKilgore on June 15, 2020 at 12:25 pm

Motion Picture Exhibitor, Sept. 19, 1962: “The Tascosa Drive-In, Amarillo, Tex., is now free of the detour maze as the expressway construction has extended beyond the drive-in. Alex Gilbert, manager, has opened the back exit to relieve the traffic snarl.”

MichaelKilgore
MichaelKilgore on November 2, 2021 at 11:11 pm

Years later, I found that opening clue.

Motion Picture Herald, May 17, 1952: “The Tascosa drive-in theatre, on North Fillmore, Amarillo, Texas, opened.”

And now NewspaperArchive.com filled in the Amarillo gap that kept me from knowing the date. I uploaded the grand opening ad from May 2, 1952. The first double feature was “The Highwayman” with Charles Coburn, “The Longhorn” with Bill Elliott, and a couple of unnamed color cartoons.

BigScreen_com
BigScreen_com on July 15, 2024 at 12:51 pm

Closed after the 2023 season:

Amarillo, TX: Tascosa Drive-In Closed [Oct 27, 2023]

The theater has been purchased and the new owners hope to reopen soon:

Amarillo, TX: Local Business Owners Purchase Tascosa Drive-In, Reopening Planned [Jul 15, 2024]

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