Couple opens drive-in theater in Goochland County

By Matt Butner - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

GOOCHLAND, VA (WWBT) - A Goochland couple is putting a modern spin, on an old-fashioned, concept- the drive-in movie theater. Their creation, the Goochland drive-in, opens this Friday.

"I'm just a big dreamer - I've been that way my whole life," said John Heidel, Co-owner.

If that's the case, then consider this John Heidel's field of dreams.

"If you build it, they will come," said John.

Together with his wife Kristina, John imagined this place four years ago, and then built it from the ground up. The first step was finding the land, 10 acres, right near the Hadensville exit off I-64 in Goochland.

"We saw the spot and the location, and we fell in love with it," John said.

Just about a year ago, this whole area was heavily wooded- just another obstacle that had to be overcome in pursuit of the dream.

"All around this is a thicket of thorns and thick brush, you can't get through it.  In fact, they had to bush hog it just so the surveyors could come in," he said.

Then there were the zoning changes, the traffic studies- and not least of all, the financial cost. But John doesn't want to talk about that - it's not what dreamers do.

"Completely classified. We don't share that, but I will tell you that building a drive-in in the 21st century is not a cheap proposal," John said.

"He's definitely more on the dreamer side, and I'm an accountant by background, so we're the perfect team, as we like to call it," Kristina said.

So on Friday night, all of the challenges will be a thing of the past, and the Heidel's will get to focus on their passion for drive-in movies.

"That whole bit of old-fashioned entertainment - it's never gone out of style, even though the drive-ins kind of died off," John said. "I don't know if I feel like Kevin Costner in field of dreams, but I do hope people will come. I think once they do they'll really enjoy it,"

Friday's opening night will be a double feature-- if you want to see what's playing or get ticket information, just click here.

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