I've been driving up and down Rt. 8 through Watertown a lot lately, and I had a serious flashback of going to the old Watertown Drive-In Movie Theater off Frost Bridge Road.

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I loved going to see movies there, but I had even more fun at the high school parties in the late 1980s. After the theater had gone out of business and shut down operations, the huge abandoned parking lot was the perfect location for a couple hundred rowdy teenagers to meet up for a fun night away from the watchful eyes of their parents.

Kids from all of the area high schools used to converge there on Friday and Saturday nights. I went to Holy Cross, but there used to be kids there from Watertown High, Thomaston High, Sacred Heart, Kennedy, Wilby, Crosby, Wolcott, and Kaynor Tech too.

The theater was located in a beautiful part of the Naugatuck River Valley, right on the Naugatuck River, not far from the Thomaston / Watertown line. It was surrounded by thick forest in every direction.

I found an old flyer from the Grand Opening weekend of the Watertown Drive-In Theater on Cinematreasures.org.

Credit - Public Domain
Credit - Public Domain

The Watertown Drive-In opened on June 30, 1955 with a double-feature showing of Daddy Long Legs and Canyon Crossroads. Less than two months after its grand opening, the Theater was mostly destroyed in the Great Flood on August 18, 1955. Their giant screen survived the Great Flood of 55 though, and it reopened to the public the following Summer on July 1, 1956.

I remember seeing movies there through the 70's and early 80's, but the theater closed for good in 1984. The concession stand and big screens stood until the early 2000's, and now the property is home to a huge building that houses North East Transportation and the Frost Bridge Transfer Station.

If you want to see a drive-in movie here in Connecticut now, there are three that are still in operation - The Pleasant Valley Drive-In Theater in Barkhamsted, Southington Drive-In Theater in Southington, and the Mansfield Drive-In Theater in Mansfield.

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