Plantation Drive-In

6214 Grand Avenue,
Des Moines, IA 50312

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Plantation Drive-In

The Plantation Drive-In opened on July 2, 1965 with Charlton Heston in “Major Dundee” & Pat Boone in Never Put It in Writing". It had a car capacity of 950. The drive-in lasted until 1986 when it closed. It has been demolished and is now Sands Volley Ball Club.

Contributed by Chuck

Recent comments (view all 12 comments)

kencmcintyre on June 16, 2009 at 1:29 am

Here is a December 1965 ad from the Des Moines Register:

Logan5 on July 1, 2009 at 12:50 pm

As of June 2009, the marquee at the Grand Avenue entrance (or at least the bottom portion of the marquee) is still standing – with Sands Volleyball Club signage. The box office is still standing as well, although the glass has been replaced or covered over with plywood. The screen and it’s supporting steel structure are no longer there.

Here’s the text of an interesting article about the opening of the Plantation Drive-In from the August 16, 1965 issue of BoxOffice Magazine:

Plantation Drive-In Opens in Des Moines
From North Central Edition

DES MOINES – The 950-car Plantation Drive-In opened here recently boasting the largest screen in the Midwest-50x120 feet. The airer is operated by Richard Davis and Clay Rusk, owners of the Pioneer Drive-In here, and Bob Fridley, who operates the Capri and Varsity (Des Moines), the King (Ida Grove) and Capri (Lake City), all indoor theatres.

The all-season airer is equipped with 402 auto heaters and an air-conditioned concessions building. First-run films are scheduled through October. Jim Walker is manager. Rodney Davis is his assistant.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on January 30, 2012 at 6:21 pm

thanks Logan5 great extra history.

rivest266 on July 25, 2012 at 7:08 pm

This opened on July 2nd, 1965. Ad uploaded in photo section.

Drive-In 54
Drive-In 54 on July 26, 2012 at 5:15 pm

Uploaded Goggle Earth view 1995. It looks like the projection booth is still being used.

rivest266 on July 27, 2012 at 2:32 am

Also 1967 aerial uploaded here.

Drive-In 54
Drive-In 54 on July 27, 2012 at 8:52 am

Thanks rivest266 for 1967 aerial.

davidcoppock on May 30, 2018 at 2:59 am

Looks like there is a soccer goal near the box office in the above photo?

Logan5 on June 6, 2018 at 6:56 pm

Yes, there is a soccer goal near the box office. The Aliber Soccer Complex is next door.

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