There’s big news on Colorado’s Western Slope. George Rodriguez is the new owner of Delta’s Tru Vu Drive-In, as reported by KREX, Grand Junction’s News Leader. Actually, there’s been a lot of Tru Vu news over the past five years, so let me get you caught up.
When we last left the Tru Vu Drive-In in Delta CO, it was an early stop in my 2017 Drive-In-a-Day Odyssey. I’ve written a lot about it since then, but it’s all been in my book, Drive-Ins of Colorado. If you’re a Carload completist with a copy of that book, you can skip down a couple of paragraphs.
After only a cursory check on the Tru Vu’s history, I wrote in my Odyssey stop there that it opened in 1954. That may or may not be accurate. Another passage was extremely off the mark: “A lot of drive-in theaters have some drama associated with them. They add screens, they lose screens. They shut down for a while, and sometimes reopen. Not the Tru Vu.” I couldn’t have been more wrong – in its first 15 years, the Tru Vu had the most tumultuous life of any drive-in I’ve heard of. That section took up two full pages in the book, and it’s beyond the scope of this post. Everything quieted down in 1968 when Jeannie and Stanley Dewsnup bought it along with Delta’s other theaters.
Stanley passed away in 2008, and Jeannie continued to operate the Tru Vu until she died in April 2019. James Lane and his family stepped in to run the drive-in only to hit the headwind that was the 2020 start to the Covid pandemic. He will always have a warm place in my heart, not just for this unselfish work, but also for giving me permission to use a photo of the Tru Vu for my book cover.
Now that we’re caught up, here’s the news from December 2022. Rodriguez began working with Jeannie Dewsnup in 1997 and became her “right hand” according to KREX. His daughter Jessikah Rodriguez remembered getting on a crane when her dad was painting the screen. Now the family is planning to embrace a 50s vibe and stay open longer. Sounds great!
I’m always happy to have any excuse to embed a drive-in video, and good news from a Colorado drive-in makes it even better. I hope you’ll agree that this was worth the wait.