Take a Covid-cautious joyride this fall with these drive-in, drive-thru events

Westwinddrive In
Get your movie theater fix at West Wind Drive-In. (Photo by Jeremy Sykes)

Since Sacramento’s traditional fall festivities—like concerts, movie nights, and cultural festivals and trick-or-treating—are on a pandemic-produced hold, venues and organizers have taken a cue from a mainstay of Americana, the suddenly-in-fashion old-fashioned drive-in theater, steering fun-seekers toward car-centric experiences to ensure physical distancing. From al fresco Halloween flicks to a moonlit Día de los Muertos celebration with roadside memorials, behold some entertaining options that give new meaning to joyrides.

Día de los Muertos Drive-Thru Festival 

Honor the dearly departed with a drive-thru Día de los Muertos celebration hosted by the Latino Center of Art & Culture. (Illustration by Matt K. Shrugg)

Honor the dearly departed with a drive-thru Día de los Muertos celebration hosted by the Latino Center of Art & Culture. (Illustration by Matt K. Shrugg)

Oct. 29.-Nov. 1 Sacramento’s Latino Center of Art & Culture will celebrate Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead), the annual Mexican holiday honoring the dearly departed, with a moonlit drive-thru festival. Arrive at the center—located along the riverfront near Miller Regional Park—on time for your reservation and cruise through memorial altars created by families and friends, and film projections on screens and buildings of nighttime scenes from Día de los Muertos events in Oaxaca. Along the route, see mojigangas (giant puppets) as well as masked folklórico dancers as the aroma of copal (a traditional incense) and cempasúchil (marigolds, the flowers of the dead) wafts past your rolled-down windows, paving the way for the event’s artistic centerpiece: an urban re-creation of a candle-lit Mexican graveyard with an adjoining church. Free. Reservations available through Eventbrite starting Sept. 28. Oct. 29-Nov. 1. Times vary by day. Latino Center of Art & Culture. 2700 Front St. 916-446-5133. thelatinocenter.com

West Wind Drive-In

Ongoing Get your movie theater fix at this old-school drive-in, an American relic: Pull up to one of the six big screens to watch new releases like Christopher Nolan’s buzzy action thriller Tenet or buckle up for a ghoulish night of Halloween favorites with a host of spooky flicks during the theater’s “Thirteen Nights of Fright,” from kid-approved double features of Coraline and Paranorman (Oct. 28); to triple screenings of classic horror films like Dracula, The Mummy and The Wolf Man (Oct. 27); as well as solo screamers like the 1978 and 2018 versions of Halloween and Come Play (Oct. 31). Top off this nostalgic experience with classic showtime eats like popcorn and cotton candy, available at the on-premises snack shack—just don’t forget your face mask. $8.50 per person ($2.00 for children ages 5-11; free for 4 and under). West Wind Sacramento 6 Drive-In. 9616 Oates Dr. Sacramento. 916-363-6572. westwinddi.com

Showtimes

Oct. 28

Coraline (6:50 p.m.) and Paranorman (8:45 p.m)
Shaun of the Dead (6:50 p.m.) and Little Monsters (8:45 p.m)
28 Days Later (9:15 p.m.) and 28 Weeks Later (11:35 p.m.)
Dawn of the Dead (9:10 p.m.) and George A. Romero’s Land of the Dead (11:15 p.m.)

Oct. 29

Amityville Horror (6:40 p.m.)
Monster House (6:40 p.m.)
The Addams Family (6:40 p.m.)
Goosebumps (6:40 p.m.) and Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween (8:50 p.m.)
Paranormal Activity 1, 2 and 3 (6:40, 8:30 and 10:25 p.m.)
Beetlejuice (8:35 p.m.)
Poltergeist (9:15 p.m.)
Halloween, 1978 (10:45 p.m.)
The Haunting in Connecticut (11:45 p.m.)
The Empty Man (11:45 p.m.)

Oct. 30

Coco (6:40 p.m.)
Halloween (6:40 p.m.)
Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit (6:40 p.m.)
Corpse Bride (6:40 p.m.)
The Nightmare Before Christmas (6:40 p.m.)
The Goonies (6:40 p.m.) and Gremlins (9:00 p.m.)
Come Play (8:35  p.m.)
Sleepy Hollow (8:45 p.m.) and The Haunting (10:55 p.m.)
Annabelle (8:35 p.m.) and Annabelle: Creation (10:40 p.m.)
Hocus Pocus (9:05 p.m.)
Halloween (11:20 p.m.)

Oct. 31

Coco (6:40  p.m.)
The Nightmare Before Christmas (6:40 p.m.)
Hotel Transylvania (6:40 p.m.) and The Addams Family (8:35 p.m.)
Monster House (6:40 p.m.) and Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween (8:35 p.m.)
Hocus Pocus (9:05 p.m.)
Halloween, 1978 (8:50  p.m.)
It (10:40 p.m.)
Halloween, 2018 (11:00 p.m.)
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark (11:20 p.m.)
The Rocky Horror Picture Show (12 a.m.)

Quarry Park Adventures

Quarry Park's fall drive-in movie lineup includes spooky screenings of "The Nightmare Before Christmas" and "Beetlejuice" over Halloween weekend. (Movie posters courtesy of Quarry Park Adventures)

Quarry Park’s fall drive-in movie lineup includes spooky screenings of “The Nightmare Before Christmas” and “Beetlejuice” over Halloween weekend. (Movie posters courtesy of Quarry Park Adventures)

Through Nov. 6 By day, Rocklin’s Quarry Park Adventures offers zip lining and rope courses, but on Friday and Saturday nights this fall, the parking lot will host family-friendly films, drive-in-style, from animated hits like Disney-Pixar’s Coco to cult classics like Back to the Future, with spooky screenings of The Nightmare Before Christmas and Beetlejuice over Halloween weekend. In the name of physical distancing, the 40 spots available for viewing are parked in every other space (you can snuggle up in your truck bed, but no lawn chairs). Bringing your own snacks is encouraged, but you can also purchase theater treats (while wearing a face mask, of course) like Red Vines, kettle corn and M&Ms at tables stationed in the parking lot. $25 per vehicle. Fri. & Sat. Times vary. Quarry Park Adventures. 5373 Pacific St. Rocklin. 916-824-1680. quarrypark.com

Showtimes
Oct. 30 @ 7 p.m. – The Nightmare Before Christmas
Oct. 30 @ 9 p.m. – Beetlejuice
Oct. 31 @ 6:30 p.m. – Hotel Transylvania
Oct. 31 @ 9 p.m. – Hocus Pocus
Nov. 6 @ 6:30 p.m. – Back to the Future
Nov. 7 @ 6:30 p.m. – Onward

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