Sky-Way Drive-In

I-36 and Co Road 1 A,
Coshocton, OH 43812

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Sky-Way Drive-In

One of Coshocton, OH. first and short-lived airers was the Sky-Way Drive-In. The grand opening night was on May 29, 1948 screening the 1947 romantic comedy “It Had To Be You” featuring Ginger Rogers, & Cornell Wilde. The new drive-in was opened by Frank O. Gilfilen and later on Frederick T. Williams from Grove City, PA. Williams would become a special partner who contributed $10,000.00 for common stock to the new Sky-Way Drive-In. It could park 425 cars each with in-a-car speakers. On January 23, 1952, the screen tower blew down during a severe wind storm. So in-between February and April of 1952, Gilfilen made new improvements to the drive-in to get it ready for the new 1952 drive-in season.

The Sky-Way Drive-In got a new 48ft screen tower with a new aluminum screen with transite panels, also a new glass enclosed box office was installed. In the winter months when the drive-in was closed, Gilfilen worked for the Shaw-Barton Inc. They were manufacturers and distributors of speciality advertising calendars, pens and other items. In June of 1954, Gilfilen was taken to court by the State of Ohio over getting an easement and right-of-way through his drive-in property. They wanted to relocate a road and intersection on the theatre grounds. It never went to trial and was settled in court. The last movie to be screened at the Sky-Way Drive-In was on August 18, 1954. At that time Frank O. Gilfilen was prepared to announce plans to open another drive-in theatre in the area in 1955, called the Tri-Vale Drive-In.

Contributed by Randy Studer, Ken McIntyre

Recent comments (view all 4 comments)

jwmovies on November 28, 2012 at 7:28 pm

Approx. address for this drive-in was 788 South 2nd Street.

Drive-In 54
Drive-In 54 on September 21, 2017 at 12:37 am

The address is:

I-36 and Co Road 1 A Coshocton, Ohio 43812 Make sure you leave space between 1_A also.

Kenmore on September 22, 2017 at 11:14 pm

A closer address, according to Google Maps, is 23222 Co Rd 621, Coshocton, OH.

A 1960 aerial photo shows the drive-in on County Road 621, which is the next road to the NE along I-36 from Co Road 1 A. The drive-in sat about ¼ mile up the road on the south side.

Today, Coshocton Pallet & Door Building Materials sits on the property and apart from its triangular shape, there is no trace of the old drive-in remaining.

Drive-In 54
Drive-In 54 on September 22, 2017 at 11:57 pm

You have the wrong drive-in Kenmore. That was the Tri-Vale Drive-In. I’m working historical overviews of them now.

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