May 13: Blue Fox Drive-In Theatre, Oak Harbor WA

It’s Day 133 of my virtual Drive-In-a-Day Odyssey. Oak Harbor WA is only about 13 miles from what was my starting point, Port Townsend, but a lot of that is water. So I took a ferry for the first time this year to Whidbey Island, home of the Blue Fox Drive-In Theatre. The total travel time was almost an hour and a half.

According to an obituary in the Whidbey News-Times, the Blue Fox was built in 1959 by Woodrow “Woody” Cecil and his wife Charlotte. Another article said Woody “partnered with George Dickson” to build it.

A 2006 article said Darrell and Lori Bratt purchased the theater in 1988. In 1990, it switched to FM sound. The screen went down in a 1998 windstorm, but obviously they fixed that.

In 2012, they turned to the community to help raise money for a digital projector. With that success, the projector was installed in time to start the 2013 season.

The Blue Fox also has a go-cart track (video here), and about a year ago in April 2016, they replaced the old tires that lined the edges. To get rid of the tires, they held a tire giveaway. Kelsey Bratt, daughter-in-law of owner Darrell Bratt, told the Whidbey News-Times, “Who doesn’t want a tire swing in the backyard?”

The Blue Fox is just a fun place to be. It’s got an arcade and those go-carts in addition to the classic drive-in experience. On the screen, they showed Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 as the second feature so I got to watch something new early – Born In China. And after I ordered my pizza, they gave me a pager shaped like a pizza slice so I’d know when to pick it up. It was busy, and a bit chilly, but it was a great way to spend a Saturday night.

Miles Today / Total:  23 / 14569 (rounded to the nearest mile)

Movie Showing / Total Active Nights: Born In China / 60

Nearby Restaurant: Tamayo’s, just a block away from Flintstone Park (see below), is one of those Thai Asian fusion restaurants. I don’t know what to call it, but I sure enjoyed lunch there. There was pho, there were spring rolls, and the soup was amazing.

Where I Virtually Stayed: The Best Western Plus Oak Harbor is a nice place not too far from downtown and the bayside parks. There were cookies in the evening, a nice room with good wifi and a fridge, and an amazing array of choices for breakfast with sausage, bacon, and eggs along with fruit and the usual continental breakfast suspects.

Only in Oak Harbor: There’s a little park on the bay called Flintstone Park. So of course they had to add a concrete replica of Fred Flintstone’s stone-age car. Just in case you ever wanted to get your picture taken while pretending to be Fred or Wilma.

Next stop: Twilight Drive-In Theatre, Langley BC.