Coronavirus: Ohio drive-in to host graduation ceremonies

MONROE TOWNSHIP, Ohio — Drive-in movie theaters are not necessarily associated with 21st century teens who are used to on-demand, streaming media in the palm of their hand.

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However, an Ohio drive-in is planning to host graduation ceremonies, among other non-traditional events, at the venue during a time of social distancing.

The Showtime at the Starlite Drive-In has the screen, speakers and space, WKRC reported.

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“We had someone call us about a wedding this year,” theater co-owner Jeff Groner, told WKRC. “It was the first wedding, and it got us thinking, you know, maybe this could be a venue.”

After success hosting drive-in church services, owners posted on social media that they could be a venue for graduations. They said got calls from many high schools in the Cincinnati area, WKRC reported.

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They can allow 300 cars at a time. Each car will park at speaker posts, keeping at least a six-foot distance.

“Seniors will have a graduation,” Goner told WKRC. “(That) won't get stolen from them.”

The drive-in plans to start screening movies again May 1.

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In other parts of the country, drive-in theaters, which have built-in social distancing, have been some community’s only source of entertainment, CNN reported.

According to the United Drive-In Theater Owners Association, about 8% of the more than 300 theaters nationwide have remained open, CNN reported.