Jan. 12: King, Russellville AL

It’s Day 12 of my virtual Drive-In-a-Day Odyssey, and the drive was pretty short again today. It took less than an hour and a half to get from Athens to the King Drive-In north of Russellville AL.

The King is closed for the season. Its Facebook page suggests that patrons check back in mid-February for details on when it will reopen for spring.

People tell me that the speakers still work at the King, which has been around since 1949. (There’s also FM radio sound, but what’s the fun in that?) The King was listed in the 1950 Theatre Catalog as one of 31 active Alabama drive-ins, open seven days a week for nine months a year and operated by Lee King. Sorry I missed seeing a show here.

Miles Today / Total:  65 / 1078 (rounded to the nearest mile)

Movie Showing / Total Active Nights: dark / 9

Nearby Restaurant: With the drive-in closed, I didn’t mind driving 3.5 miles back to the middle of Russellville to the 43 Grill (as in US Highway 43) for the best steak and salad bar I’ve had so far on this trip.

Where I Virtually Stayed: There weren’t a lot of choices in Russellville, but fortunately one of them was the Best Western Plus. Very reasonable prices, friendly staff, guest laundry, and breakfast to get me on the road again.

Only in Russellville: According to Wikipedia, after the War of 1812, the U.S. government wanted a better road from Nashville to New Orleans. That road, named Jackson’s Military Road after Andrew Jackson, passed through what became Russellville. One of the road’s builders, Major William Russell, gave the city its name. Today, US Highway 43 follows portions of that original road.

Next Stop: Blue Moon Drive-In, Guin AL.