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TOPIC: Has anyone done this before?

Re: Has anyone done this before? 20 Jul 2003 13:58 #28342

  • outaframe
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HELLO JIM <> Right on, the drugs are one of those "worse" things I was referring to, but there are also plenty of others: Rape, sexual abuse, child molestation, assualt, child abuse, product liability, and just about anything else that Big Brother, or some hungry lawyer can dream up... When a customer drives his car into a drive-in, it is sort of an extension of himself, like the clothes he wears or what's in his pockets, and he is responsible for he does in his car (to a major extent)... If the theater owner provides the "car" (seating arrangement) as part of ticket price, then it becomes a whole new ballgame... The news is full of nonsense litigation (and law enforcement) horror stories every day: the fat kids -vs- Micky Dee's is a recent example... Why leave yourself wide open for something like this?... And, I'm sure you would have a hard time getting liability insurance, as well...
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Re: Has anyone done this before? 20 Jul 2003 15:31 #28343

  • gmonny
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Wow...I was hoping to get all kinds of feedback, but I certainly did not expect that 'legal' stuff to that extent. I'm glad you brought it up, though. I'm really not sure how to approach this issue. I must be really idealistic because the idea of selling drugs in a movie theater is just, I don't know...not a common thing? My husband comes from a family of policeman, and that is not something that they even came up with. However, it's not to say that something like this will NEVER happen, so thanks for the heads up. This one will require some real thought.

As for all those other potential crimes, yeah, I must be really naive because I just can't see those things happening in a movie theater. Of course, in a venue like the one I've suggested, there is potential to keep such things hidden at some point, but then these crimes can be committed pretty much anywhere. I guess the main question I would glean from all this is, would I be creating an opportunity for such crimes by providing a 'place' where such things can be out of sight? I say anything is possible. So let me ask you...how would you avoid this in this scenario? Not do it? Then they would have closed every drive-in in America, don't you think? And how do the open drive-ins control such 'legal' issues? I will have to pose this question to them, unless someone out there has the answer.

I must say, this reply put a bit of a damper on my idea, but I don't believe that by creating something like this indoor drive-in would lead to a sight for crime unless it already existed in today's current venues. Has anyone else had any issues with drug-selling, the DEA or anything of the like in your area? Anyone own a theater that was taken away due to potential drug selling or any other crime? Has anyone else heard of any crime, other than the Pee Wee Herman thing, taking place in a movie theater/drive-in? More importantly, if you owned your own theater or drive-in, how do you prevent such activity from occurring in your venue? I'd really love to hear from any of you who have answers, experiences or thoughts on the above. I'm totally about prevention and any help from the experts would be totally appreciated.

And thanks for information on the LEDs!! That will definitely come in handy.
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Re: Has anyone done this before? 20 Jul 2003 17:01 #28344

  • outaframe
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HELLO "GEE" <> Well, like I said earlier, just avoid giving 'em a "box" (closed in car body) to do it in!... If momma spanks junior for being a brat inside that box you provided, by a lot of today's standards she has committed child abuse, and you aided and abetted her by providing the box!... The rear half of a top-down convertable style of body will actually be more appealing to most customers, and WON'T give the privacy (and semi-obscurity) for her to do this without fear of being observed... The SAME can also be said for all the rest of the problems mentioned... Again, like I mentioned earlier, there are fiberglass reproductions available which would probably be ideal for what you have in mind, and at far much less cost and problems then the real thing!... BUT, like any business that deals with the public, managing a theater also INVOLVES keeping your eyes open, and a degree of intervention, either active or passive (calling in the cops), to maintain things... Just goes with the territory!... You have the kernels of a good idea, just don't leave off any manhole covers for yourself to fall into...
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Re: Has anyone done this before? 21 Jul 2003 04:19 #28345

  • gmonny
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Hey Ouut!! Can I play devil's advocate here for just a sec? I know it ain't the right forum for this type of debate, but I just have to ask the question...let's take your example of momma spankin' junior inside a car at my indoor drive-in...are you suggesting that in allowing momma and junior into my theater, I've aided and/or abetted in a crime? I mean, maybe your exaggerating just a bit to make your point, but I don't believe any of the venues where individuals who have been publicly identified as child abusers for hitting their children in public have been slapped with any kind of a litigation simply because it is where the abuser chose to act. I don't recall any news on lawsuits against the hundreds of stores where such acts do occur on a daily basis. Of course, that's not to say they don't exist, but I'll have to find a lawyer who can back this statement up.

This goes for all other types of crimes as well. As I mentioned before, my husband is a cop and with no offense to any of you, stated that there is a guideline that is followed when making a criminal drug bust. He is not saying that it is impossible that something like the DEA taking advantage of crime for personal gain doesn't exist, but he does say that it is unlikely that it is as easy as identifying a juicy find like an indoor theater and confiscating it based on false accusations of drug selling. Besides, if this were the case, there are many bars, restaurants (and I mean nice ones), and hotels that the DEA can take over in a heartbeat simply for drug selling.

Once again, I truly appreciate any and all of your feedback because it will keep me on my toes. However, I have to mention that in most states, there is what is known as a common sense clause. All legal professionals are familiar with this clause, and so are most public safety employees. There has to be some fine line where the obvious becomes ridiculous and I feel the need to just mention this. I realize the potential for a variety of risks, but I don't believe that they only apply to my idea. I'm of the opinion that if no one has been impacted thus far by any suggestions of the above crimes, that even though it could happen in the future, I can be comfortable that my venue will retain just as much risk as the next business owner. This includes all movie theaters, drive-ins, and any other public venue. To think that such crimes would only exist due to a venue such as mine is kind of ludicrous and although I truly appreciate you having brought it up, I think I get the point. But once again, if these crimes can happen in my type of venue, then they would have already happened in the venues of the present day. And unless someone can confirm for me whether any type of crime mentioned in previous replies have occurred in any of the theater venues, I thank you for your input and beg you to come up with other thoughts.

Out, I do appreciate your input and thank you for your encouragement. Please don't take this the wrong way, but I do get it, and I will cma (cover my a--).

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Re: Has anyone done this before? 21 Jul 2003 10:10 #28346

Although I have never seen an In-Door Drive-In. I have seen some Drive-Ins that have screened in sections by the concession stands where patrons can find seating and enjoy the show as if they were in an indoor theatre. You've got an interesting idea. I'm interested in seeing where it takes you.
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Re: Has anyone done this before? 21 Jul 2003 10:46 #28347

  • Ken Layton
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I like to tell it like it is: an indoor "mock-up" of a drive-in theater is a STUPID idea doomed to failure. The only way to capture the real drive-in feel and experience is to be at a real drive-in theater. You should look into reopening a closed drive-in theater. Nothing beats the feeling you get when you start 'restoring' a theater that's been closed for a while!
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Re: Has anyone done this before? 21 Jul 2003 13:14 #28348

  • gmonny
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Hey Silver!! Thanks for the vote of confidence.

Hey Ken!! Don't mind the straightforwardness, but I think you could possibly use just a little tact in telling what you really think. And if you have read all the replies in this thread, you are right...you can't get the real feeling of a drive-in unless you go to one. But what if you don't have one around to go to? Then what do you do? I truly appreciate your candor, but before you judge, understand the WHY of it all. Would I be in this to make money? Yeah, of course, but I don't expect to be stinkin' rich off of it. I just want to be able to capture something of my past, as close as possible, so that my children can experience some of what we grew up with.

But since you feel so strongly about it's failure, tell me...what is it about this idea that you think will fail? I can handle constructive criticism, no problem. Just can't take criticism with no fact or basis to back it up.
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Re: Has anyone done this before? 21 Jul 2003 13:14 #28349

  • outaframe
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HELLO "GEE" <> The point I was trying to make is to not provide a nearly private closed in envoirnment (closed car body) where you have no idea or control as to what's going on... To do so invites big problems, both criminal and liability-wise... That school hazing incident in the Chicago suburb has led to demands for prosecution of the people who sold the beer (to the parents of the students) which the kids were drinking at the site... If illegal activity is going on in a location you own, your property can be considered a "common nuisance," and you become a party to the crime... Ambitious proscecutors, hungry product liability lawyers, and "hanging" judges have been known to do strange things that have little to do with common sense... A person who drives his car to a drive-in has the major responsibility for what goes on in that car, but if you provide the car as part of your product, then you assume a larger share of the responsibility... Keeping your "car" open to public view will minimize both what goes on, and your responsibility... 'Nuff said...
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Re: Has anyone done this before? 21 Jul 2003 13:20 #28350

  • gmonny
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One more thing, Ken...the drive-ins in our area will not be restored because the primary reason they are being torn down is because of the increase in gang activity and need for security. If industry experts couldn't handle it and they know the business, I don't believe it's something that I can handle. Will gangs come to my venue? Possibly. I'm sure they visit all movie theaters and existing drive-ins. How do they handle the gangs? Don't know. All I do know is that we have them here and they go to the movies just like everyone else and don't cause trouble in movie theaters that I'm aware of. So if I can eliminate that danger by putting the drive in in a movie theater, than I've eliminated a negative element of the drive-in concept, right?
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Re: Has anyone done this before? 21 Jul 2003 21:22 #28351

How did we handle gangs? When in Houston we had 14 full time off duty police officers as security. We arrested atleast 1 person a day. Most problems we had was drug use (smoking pot in the auditoriums) and car theft. Are you aiding a crime? no.
is there increased liablity? yes. wait till junior slams his hand in the "car door" When it is thier own car they slam it in it is one thing but whne you provide it that is another issue. I just think about the large quanity of people who choose to sit in the seats where some one had torn the cupholder off the show before and they ripped thier pants. You know someone is going to "slam" thier hand in the door.
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Re: Has anyone done this before? 22 Jul 2003 01:10 #28352

  • Ken Layton
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Sorry for being blunt, but the people who know me know I tell it like it is (no sugar coating).


It sounds like the gangbanger problem could have been controlled/eliminated by better management at the affected theaters. I think they needed a *tough* manager---one who's not afraid to call the police (again and again if need be). The gang problem could happen at any business whether it's a theater, fast food restaurant, grocery store, pool hall, etc.

You should have a large "Rules" sign posted conspicuously at your drive-in theater entrance. It should have at least these rules:
NO Weapons
No alcohol
No Drugs
Violators subject to arrest & prosecution

I would suggest you talk to Jack Ondracek owner of the Rodeo 3 Drive-in theater in Port Orchard, Wash. ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it and mention I sent you). He runs an excellent drivein theater operation and he plays hardball with troublemakers. He can give some excellent pointers on dealing with troublemakers.
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Re: Has anyone done this before? 22 Jul 2003 13:13 #28353

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gmonny, you were thinking about "stars" in the ceiling and were going to look into LEDs (Light Emitting Diodes) as a long-lived source, so I thought I would introduce you to a source of READY MADE ceiling panels of 'stars' in the form of LEDs for sale in 4x4-foot or 4x8-foot to fit standard T-bar drop in ceiling frames. They have 24 LEDs per panel ready to be hardwired into your system. They also have auto-color changing styles as well. Don't know about price. Here is their URL: http://www.ledlinc.com/StarNite.html
Jim R. (new E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) member: www.HistoricTheatres.org
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Re: Has anyone done this before? 22 Jul 2003 15:12 #28354

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Hey Ken!! It wasn't the bluntness and no sugar-coat that annoyed me, it was the offering of a big 'ole negative with no positive. However, your follow-up email made it all up, so we're good. I'm not adverse to receiving criticism at all, especially negative criticism. But as one manager pointed out to me long time ago, "It's easy to point out problems...the challenge lies in fixing them. So don't come to me with a problem unless you have figured out a way to fix it. Give me options."

Hey Jimor!! You are a doll!! I think these are the same panels that were used in that theater but not with LEDs. I just have to find out how to adjust the lighting so that we can go from daylight to dusk to night.

Thanks.
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Re: Has anyone done this before? 23 Jul 2003 14:27 #28355

  • jimor
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gmonny, I'm glad that you think I'm a "doll" and that you like the source for LED panels. The way to sequence other lighting to go from a daylight to dusk to night illusion lies in using what is called a Programmable Sequencer. This electronic device is sold by both Theatre suppliers of lighting products, as well as by such as www.Grainger.com , a general business-only supplier whose catalog you should already have, for many other needs in your business. You program the device to adjust a series of dimmers to different levels within a programmed span of time. You must get the kind that initiates on a pulse signal (either manual or automatic from your projection controller) and then resets automatically. To meet code you will have to hire an electrician to install the device and associated dimmers.
Jim R. (new E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) member: www.HistoricTheatres.org
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Re: Has anyone done this before? 25 Jul 2003 14:30 #28356

  • gmonny
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Thanks Jimor!! I've already got that programmable sequence thingy on my list. I used to do a little theater, so I'm familiar with the lighting techniques. It's applying it on such a grander scale that I'm trying to work out.

I've been working on a business plan, putting things together and getting my ducks in order. I have a potential distributor in my area, who happens to be family, that just may be interested in pursuing my idea. I want to cover all the basis myself so that if he does have an interest, there is little else that he needs to do other than front the buckeroos.

If anyone has any ideas on on what else to bring up in a business plan, other than all that has been discussed thus far, please shoot it in my direction.

Thanks for all the help and keep it coming!!

G.
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