Movie Under the Stars


Every summer we try to catch a movie as a family at an outdoor drive-in movie theater.  It’s always a fun time!  We started the tradition when our kids were wee babies, simply because our habit of seeing movies in theaters was interuppted by….babies!  So J and I brainstormed and thought , “how can we see a movie WITH a baby?” (we don’t have family nearby for babysitting and sitters were hard to find for awhile!).  The answer J came up with….let’s go to the outdoor.

And what fun it is!  The kids always play on the jungle gyms up by the big screen early while waiting for the sun to set.  We often dress them in their jammies before we get there, so when they fall asleep later, it’s easy to just put them in bed when we get home.  Other parents have the same idea, and it’s cute to see lots of kids running around before the movie starts, playing in their jammies outside.


Playing around on the jungle gyms below the BIG jammies!

Playing around on the jungle gyms below the BIG screen….in jammies!

We take our van and park backwards and pop open the back to make a snuggly area for the kids to lounge.  We put nap mats or an inflatable matress, blankets and pillows in there and the kids have a great place to watch the movie (and fall asleep).  One time, my son only made it about 10 minutes before he fell asleep.  Whoops!  Too comfortable!

Sometimes, if the kids both fall asleep, we stay for the second movie (it’s often a more “adult” or older kid oriented movie).  Then, when the movie’s done, we load the kids (asleep) into their car seats for the ride home.

When the kids were babies, we brought a pack-n-play for them to fall asleep in.  Put a bug net over the top….done!  Worked like a charm.

Some things to remember to bring:  chairs for the parents, bug spray, blankets, and sweatshirts.  It has almost always been colder than I expect it will be to sit out under the stars and watch a movie.

Our usual place is the Highway 18 outdoor.  But check this website too for others in Wisconsin.



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