San Angelo TX Drive-In History – Read It Twice

Drive-in screen nearly destroyed by flames

The Jet Drive-In screen burning in Nov. 1968. This is a detail of a larger, better photo in the San Angelo Standard-Times

Here’s a story for you. Yesterday I was continuing some research on a drive-in project that’s been consuming a lot of my time, and I ran into a photo of the marquee of the Twin Vue Drive-In. It was in an ad from a sign company and didn’t indicate where this drive-in was located. So I figured that name was unusual enough that I could pinpoint where that sign once stood.

I was wrong. Even though the “Twin” part of the name suggests a drive-in that started after the biggest boom times, there were still maybe a half dozen different Twin Vues in one or two words, with or without hyphen. And one of the references to one of those Twin Vues was this page, an April 2009 article by Rick Smith for the San Angelo (TX) Standard-Times, in which he efficiently summarized the nine drive-ins that had once operated there. Number Nine was a Twin Vue, of course.

This morning, my drive-in news sweep gave me a jaw-dropping coincidence. In yesterday’s Standard-Times, Alana Edgin also, completely separately, summarized the history of the nine drive-ins that had been active in San Angelo. The report’s style and a few of the details are different, and since Edgin later thanked me for pointing out Smith’s article, it was probably original, parallel work. But if you’d watched that scene in a movie, you’d never have believed it.

There are a few interesting photos in yesterday’s story, including one of the horrific demise of the Jet Drive-In, and the remarks in both articles are well worth reading. So now you should go read both of them!

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