Wilmington owner changes mind, will reopen

Wilmington Drive-In sign and distant screen

photo by Bill Eichelberger, used by permission

You may remember our previous coverage of Phillip Chakeres, the CEO of the company that owns the Wilmington (OH) Drive-In. Chakeres said he wasn’t sure whether it was closed for good, then a couple of days later he said he was certain it was closed for good. Now there’s news this week that Chakeres said he’ll open the Wilmington this year after all.

The article in the Wilmington News Journal was again written by Andrea Chaffin, who has talked to him so often she should be Chakeres’s best friend by now. “Based on the feedback last year and the interest, I felt I owed it to the people of Wilmington and the surrounding counties to give the drive-in one more chance,” he said. “That’s where we are.”

Chaffin wrote, “Last year, the drive-in did not open. At the time, company officials said its long-term future was questionable due to the economy. Chakeres said Monday he plans to evaluate the business once again at the end of the summer.”

Now I would like nothing better than for the Wilmington to thrive this year and for generations to come. And since I don’t know anything first-hand about the situation, it’s entirely possible that the current management is making all the right moves to keep it going. But when I see so many healthy, active drive-ins whose only problem is finding a lump sum to cover all new projection equipment, it really makes me wonder whether the folks here could learn how those successful drive-ins do it. Here’s hoping!

One thought on “Wilmington owner changes mind, will reopen

  1. The problem I see with all of Chakeres is that they don’t like to take any risks, which is absurd. Their other drive-in’s are only open till the last weekend in august, and often don’t open this early in the year…. we went to their springfield drive-in and they had no running water.

Comments are closed.