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Northland Drive-In Theatre


Address: G-7192 N Dort Hwy
City: Flint State: MI Zip: Phone:  
County: Genesee
Notes:
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Open: 1956 (9-5-56) AD Closed: 1986 Capacity: 1200 Status: Demolished  
Owner History: Butterfield Theatres
Web Address: N/A
Number of visits to this page since Sept 2013: 3259
 
 

1/6/2003 - Drive-Ins.com
In 1956, William Oleksyns Drive In Theatres, Inc. opened a really nice drive-in, the Northland DI on N. Dort Hwy. between Stanley and Mt. Morris Roads in Genesee Twp.

near the city of Mt. Morris. It was built on a portion of the Knickerbocker farm. It was indeed nice with only curved screen tower ever in the Flint MI area.

It was a wooden tower sheated in corrugated metal on back side. In 1965, this and the other Oleksyn drive-ins were sold to W. S. Butterfield Theatres.

Because it was winter when the drive in was sold and because the Northland DI was developed as a year round drive in, Butterfield started with matinee showings to take advantage of the early sunsets in winter. The South Dort DI was also a year round drive in. But by the late 1970s, high energy prices (those in-car heaters had to be expensive to run) and a decline in the youth population led to the year round drive-ins closing up for the winter. At the end of 1984, The Butterfield theater operations were sold to the George Kerasotes Corp.

The drive-ins were not included in the sale. The Northland stayed open though, run by Arnold Stefanic who was a 25 year veteran of Butterfield at the time of the sale, keeping the Northland going for two more seasons before a decline in business forced its closing. In terms of booking movies, the single screen Northland was at a competitive disadvange compared with the two-screen Miracle Twin DI and the US23 Twin DI. Before the Northland DI gave way to a wholesale automobile auction lot around 1990, an arson fire destroyed the refreshment building.

Northland Drive-In Theatre - AERIAL FROM MS LIVE
AERIAL FROM MS LIVE
Northland Drive-In Theatre - THE NORTHLAND NOW FROM GARY FLINN
THE NORTHLAND NOW FROM GARY FLINN
Northland Drive-In Theatre - THE NORTHLAND NOW FROM GARY FLINN
THE NORTHLAND NOW FROM GARY FLINN
Northland Drive-In Theatre - THE NORTHLAND NOW FROM GARY FLINN
THE NORTHLAND NOW FROM GARY FLINN
Northland Drive-In Theatre - THE NORTHLAND NOW FROM GARY FLINN
THE NORTHLAND NOW FROM GARY FLINN
Northland Drive-In Theatre - OLD SHOT OF MARQUEE PHOTO FROM PETER CAVANAUGH
OLD SHOT OF MARQUEE PHOTO FROM PETER CAVANAUGH
Northland Drive-In Theatre - OLD MATCH PACK
OLD MATCH PACK
Northland Drive-In Theatre - OLD AD FROM GARY FLINN
OLD AD FROM GARY FLINN
Northland Drive-In Theatre - AERIAL - PHOTO FROM TERRASERVER
AERIAL - PHOTO FROM TERRASERVER

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