Town Manager Summer Woodard told the town council Monday night that she contacted Ruby Cinemas when she heard the local theater had purchased an outdoor movie screen because showing outdoor movies is something Councilmember Patti Abel has talked about for a couple of years.
“We have Pickin in the Park, which is multi-generational, but I see this as something to really get the young families out,” Abel said.
Woodard said Ruby Cinemas agreed to partner with the town to show outdoor movies free of charge to the public for $500 per movie. The theater would supply the outdoor screen, secure the movie licensing, which can run $300 per film, and sell limited concessions during the film. She said the town could partner with businesses to sponsor the cost but then may not have a say over which movies are shown.
As previously discussed, the councilmembers agreed the hill just behind town hall would be an ideal location as it acts as a natural amphitheater. Spectators can sit on the bank or bring lawn chairs or blankets.
Woodard said Ruby Cinemas had a list of movies the town can choose from, but PG and PG13 movies are preferred to keep it family friendly.
Mayor Bob Scott said some older residents might enjoy coming out to see classic black and white films as well.
Woodard suggested holding free movies on the first Friday of the month in September and October of this year to see how it goes. If it’s successful, the town can carry forward with the event next year from May through October.
Depending on how many people attend the event, Councilmember Joe Collins said the town may want to consider removing — or at least trimming — the two large evergreen trees located on the hillside where the movie would be shown.
The town agreed to spend $1,000 on showing movies in September and October. The funding will be taken out of the contingency fund. The town will announce more details about the event when available.