Here’s another sign of hope. Our last, brief mention of the Hi-Way 50 in Lewiston TN was that its owner had retired and shut down the place. Now comes word from the Marshall County Tribune that Steve and Danielle Wakham, residents of nearby Lewisburg, have purchased the Hi-Way 50 and plan to renovate it in time to open in 2014.
According to the Tribune, the Wakhams “plan to open with digital equipment from the start. Visitors to the drive-in can also expect to see new bathrooms, new paint, and a brand new menu.” The article also noted that the screen tower “is one of the few remaining screens that were typical in the early days of outdoor movie theaters.” You can see what they mean in the photo I’ve borrowed from the Hi-Way 50’s Facebook page. What do you call that style with the thick borders around the screen and support legs on either side?
And that Facebook page looks like it’s the place to go for Hi-Way 50 status updates. The first post after the sale offered a welcome dose of enthusiasm: “Hello everyone, we’re honored to be the new owners of the Drive in and keep an old tradition alive. The Douglas family has put countless hours over the last 20 years and if not for them it very well could have closed up like most of the others around. Thank you Douglas family!” Thank you Wakhams for keeping the Hi-Way 50 alive!