Lone Star Drive-In

4600 Lawnview Avenue,
Dallas, TX 75227

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Previously operated by: United Artists Theater Circuit Inc.

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Lone Star Drive-In

The Lone Star Drive-In was opened February 3, 1951 with James Stewart in “Broken Arrow”. This became an adult drive-in in 1966 and it was closed by the city on December 18, 1987.

Contributed by Michael

Recent comments (view all 12 comments)

Driveintheatre2001 on August 2, 2011 at 3:32 pm

IF the screen could be seen from I-30, then that was when it was a pretty new Drive In as the Trees are thick in that area now. Especially in the late 70’s, early 80’s, I seem to remember alot of trees in that area. Now the Linda Kay, you could see from Hwy 175! LoL. I remember that too! The Lone Star Drive In is another Drive In site that eventually DISD bought the land.. also, Drive In land bought by DISD was the Jefferson & the Casa View Drive In..

matt54 on August 18, 2011 at 11:01 am

I’d say those memories of mine are from the late 60’s – mid-70’s, Randy. I remember being able to see the screen from R.L. Thornton, with little-to-no bushes or trees to obscure the view, but at that distance it wasn’t crystal clear. I figuew you had to know what you were looking for (I did)! As you note, Linda Kay was a completely different story – VERY clear!

dallasmovietheaters on November 24, 2013 at 5:45 am

If the trivia question were to be asked, “What Dallas drive-in theater had the longest run?” the documentable answer is none other than the Lone Star. The Lone Star Drive-In Theaters circuit run by E.L. Pack had opened Lone Star named drive-ins in El Paso, Houston, Lubbock and Waco before opening the 650-car Lone Star Drive-In at 5506 Military Parkway (though advertised as 5500 Military) in Dallas on November 3, 1951. Fireworks opened the evening followed by the main feature of “Broken Arrow.” On March 23, 1961, the Lone Star’s address was 4600 Lawnview Avenue where it was advertised until its closure.

The Lone Star’s traditional fare gravitated to adult content in 1966 where it continued successfully for more than twenty years into the home video revolution. Locals often referred to the operation as “The Porn Star.” Totally lacking in marketing, nostalgia or publicity, the Lone Star and Linda Kay were the final two adult drive-ins in Dallas into the mid-1980s with the higher-visibility Astro as the last remaining traditional ozoner in the city. The L-K went down in 1986. And the end of the line was coming for the Lone Star but it was the city that was calling and not necessarily lack of patrons.

In November of 1987, the city of Dallas filed suit seeking a temporary injunction against the Lone Star because its sexually-oriented business license expired. The operator said that it had applied for a renewal. A December 18th hearing took place and that appears to be the end the drive-in’s run. At just past 36 years of operation, the Lone Star was Dallas' winner for longest-running drive-in theater. The Astro was the last drive-in to be in operation in Dallas surviving 30 years to 1998. And arguably the Jefferson was the last standing drive-in tower torn down in 2004 after years of inactivity with the Lone Star and its brethren demolished much earlier.

Drive-In 54
Drive-In 54 on November 24, 2013 at 9:04 am

Hey dallas..Thanks for doing good historical overviews of the TX drive-ins.

Normadavis on September 7, 2014 at 7:12 pm

Historical aerials from 1952, show an abundance of mature trees in the line of site from Samuel Blvd.or R.L. Thornton, that would prevent a visual of the screen, but that being said, only ¼ – 1/3 of the trees were evergreens, meaning that the decidious trees would offer a good visual line of site during the late fall through spring.

JTL on February 15, 2018 at 3:14 am

I grew up in that neighborhood and it is completely untrue that you could see it from I-30. There would be cars parked along Lawnview that the police would occasionally run off on their rounds. There was a trailer park right behind it and we would sneak out at night to climb up on the roof of an empty trailer and get an “education”.

MountainLyon on May 13, 2018 at 9:21 am


I’m really happy to have come across this site, as I’m writing a memoir about my life, and wanted some information about this drive-in.

From January of ‘88 to July of '88, I lived in a halfway house called Cassidy Place that was located on Samuell Blvd. In the map photo above, it was located north of Samuell at the 'Y’ shaped street across (north) from Grove Hill Rd. (Looks like they are apartments or townhomes now.) Many of us kids used to walk across Samuell and sit in the back corner of the graveyard at night and watch the movies from a distance. If I recall, there were occasional skin flicks, but our long running favorite was watching The Shining, which seemed to show with quite a bit of frequency.

Sounds very likely it was this drive-in. Oh, and there is likely no way this could be seen from I-30. Our halfway house say right at the fenced edge of I-30. We had to walk up a hill to get to Samuell, meaning that the theater was well above I-30, over a quarter of a mile away from the interstate, and buried in dense oak trees, and then slightly below the interstate… meaning a gentle hill covered in trees was between the highway and the theater.

MichaelKilgore on November 11, 2019 at 8:07 pm

From Billboard, June 26, 1954: “Triple swimming pools are part of a $50,000 improvement program under way at the Lone Star and Samuel Bolevard (sic) Drive-In theaters at Dallas. Other improvements include picnic patios, panoramic screens, booth equipment and general repainting and renovating. Each of the drive-ins will have three pools, two for kids and one for adults. Use of the pools and picnic patios will be free to patrons.”

J14AmericaJ on September 9, 2020 at 10:19 am

You could absolutely see the Lone Star screen from I-30 in the 1970’s and 80’s. I remember many times seeing it from my parents car as we drove east (away from downtown). You couldn’t see it well enough to document exactly what was going on, but you could definitely see it for a few seconds as you drove east on 30. I saw it dozens of times, because I looked each time.

MichaelKilgore on October 11, 2021 at 5:44 pm

A close look at the grand opening ad that dallasmovietheaters uploaded (thanks!) shows that the Lone Star opened on Feb. 3, 1951. That goes along with a note in the March 3, 1951 Motion Picture Herald: “E. L. Pack opened his new Lone Star drive-in theatre recently. The newest ozoner has RCA in-car speakers, and M. L. Burns is the manager.”

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