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Drive-In Documentarian Seeks Fairlee Memories

When he was growing up in Dayton, Ohio, filmmaker David Gewertz went to dusk to dawn showings of Planet of the Apes at his local suburban drive-in, an experience that made him fall in love with the great 1950s-1960s activity of watching movies from your car. Drive-ins are, alas, a dying breed, but Gewertz is obsessed with an even more unusual phenomenon: the motel and drive-in combo, where you can check in and watch the flick from the comfort of your room while speakers bring in the sound.

Starting next Wednesday and continuing through Saturday, Gewertz, who is making a documentary about the last two motels in the U.S. with functioning drive-ins attached, will be at the Fairlee Drive-in to shoot footage of the motel and talk to people there for the show. Yes, Fairlee is one of the two theaters in the U.S. that can boast this feature; the other one is in Monte Viste, Colo.

Gewertz is looking for anyone who has fond memories of, or interesting anecdotes about, the Fairlee Drive-in. He can be reached at

Nicola Smith can be reached at