What says summer more than Drive-In Movie? Families in the Fifties piled the kids in the car and headed out to the Drive-In where they could relax and enjoy a movie in the comfort of their own car. It was in 1950, that local resident Chuck Pittenger had an idea for nine acres on what is now Veteran’s Blvd. Why not a drive-in here? Pittenger would operate the Drive-In for ten years before it was sold. Hilltop continued to operate during the times when other drive-ins failed and was one of the last in the country.

For the past 35 years Katie Beaver’s family operated the drive-in defying all the odds when those around them folded. Eleven years ago, Katie took the reins building a group of loyal movie goers who were distressed to learn that this year Hilltop’s opening was dubious. Like everything else, the equipment had modernized and gone digital and the projectors were now digital and were very expensive. Too expensive, in fact, for Hilltop to afford.

Roy Pittenger, Chuck’s son, learned of Hilltop’s predicament and is now the new owner of Hilltop Drive-in which now features the necessary projector to offer first-run movies. Katie will remain in a partnership to show Roy how the drive-in operates and he brings some new ideas to the table. Roy’s daughter, Hannah, will handle the marketing and social media of all the drive in has to offer as they branch out to offer other entertainment.

Live music will be featured in June prior to the start of the movie. Roy has scheduled Kent Cox and Marla Sgro on June 8, Tom Seitz on June 15, Brad Gibson on June 22 and DJ Nukie Nuk on June 29.

On May 24, the Hilltop will open featuring “Garfield” and “Ghostbuster’s Frozen Empire”. And while the movies and equipment offer the latest, visiting the concession stand takes a step back in time. The popcorn popper was purchased from Hill’s Department store when it went out of business. The desk in the office was the original desk used by Roy’s dad, Chuck, when the Drive-in opened and although many things have changed and been upgraded, the appeal of a warm summer night with a balmy breeze and a tub of popcorn combined with a super movie as you cuddle in your own car is what summer in a small town is all about.