Drive-by Shooting

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That��������s me, the twee little figure in the �������Hawkeye������� Pierce jacket, standing in a moment of non-political solidarity amid one of the character-rich locations of our upcoming Fall Fashion 2007 Issue shoot. Pictured is the Valley Drive-In Theater, which is �������dark������� now, as they call it in �������auto theater������� jargon, its grounds now acting as a recycling center in the town of Lompoc, California, about three hours northwest of L.A., in the dusty-hot valleys and canyons of Santa Barbara Country. You should come visit.

Parlay checking in at the town��������s infamous federal penitentiary, which employees many there. There are other cool places and some good �������Mezzican.������� And besides all these great historic murals, like, everywhere, there��������s a super biker-esque bar called Jasper��������s��������great jukebox, really nice aging longhairs. And believe it or not the Embassy Suites Lompoc-Central Coast hotel on H Street is kind of great, right on the main drag. It has this weird prehistoric-looking diorama in the middle of its courtyard with fountains and stuff, and guests are treated to complimentary cocktail hour from 5:30-7:30 p.m.

After the jump, a list of still opened California and New York drive-ins

Oh, if you��������re in a room that faces a Chinese restaurant in the strip mall next door, you will see actual vultures��������turkey buzzards, call them (or don��������t)��������feeding from the Dumpster! Beware��������those orange beaks get very close to your room window. But I digress. The theater reminds me of seeing Jaws as child at the Devon Drive-In, in Devon, a half hour west of Philadelphia in bucolia. There was a Dairy Queen next door��������and some creepy abandoned greenhouses that my older brother and I got into plenty of trouble in once��������and so we��������d get on the rooftop of my parent��������s Dodge Monaco station wagon with our Mister Misty��������s floats, and watch films like Jaws. (The opening scene with the shark attacking the skinny-dipping girl? We could barely see, which is good since I was 7, I think.)

But shockingly, really, there are still more than a dozen drive-ins still operating around New York and California. A bit of trivia: California had the first drive-in, which opened in 1938. In the 1960s, there were more than 220 in the state. Ninety-percent of them are now gone. One of the coolest-looking ones is the Rudidoux, in Riverside, California.

For their locations, check out driveinmovie.com, or check out a few on the list here. CALIFORNIA:

Vineland Drive-In 443 North Vineland Avenue City of Industry, CA 91746 (626) 961-9262 www.vinelandswapmeet.com Mission Drive-In 10789 Ramona Avenue Montclair, CA 91763 (909) 627-3564

Santa Fe Springs Drive-In 13963 Alondra Boulevard Santa Fe Springs, CA 90670 (714) 523-9310

Rubidoux Drive-In 3770 Opal Street Riverside, CA 92509 (951) 683-4455

NEW YORK:

Hyde Park Drive-In 510 Albany Post Rd Hyde Park, NY 12538 (845) 229-4738

Overlook Drive-In Overlook Dr Pougkeepsie, NY 12602 (845) 452-3445 Finger Lake Drive-In 1619 Clark Street Rd Auburn, NY 13021 (315) 252-3969

��������Steve Garbarino

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