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Where to Enjoy an Outdoor & Drive-In Movie Near Washington, DC

Where to enjoy an outdoor movie this summer in Washington, DC - Summer movie during sunset at Union Market

Check out the best places to experience the cinema outdoors or by driving-in with these mostly free options in the nation’s capital.

Summertime and movies go hand-in-hand. While the biggest blockbusters are usually screened in theaters, that's obviously not the case this summer as most cinemas are currently closed due to COVID-19. But fret not. This summer in DC, you have plenty of opportunities to partake in an old American pastime: drive-in and outdoor movies. It's the perfect opportunity to get out of the house, enjoy some snacks and maintain social distance. Better yet, you can catch classic flicks and films you’ve never seen before. We'll be updating this list as more drive-in theaters open up so keep your eyes peeled for a drive-in theater near you. 

1 Union Market Drive-In
Union Market Drive-In Union Market DC

The drive-in movie is not dead! Union Market, a DC hot spot that features artisanal wares and amazing food options, hosts this series of film screenings ​on the first Friday of each month from the spring through the fall. Drive-in parking costs $20 (reserve beforehand here). At this time, there are no walk-ups, bike-ups or picnickers are allowed. This year's films include Space Jam (July 17) and The Lion King (July 24).

2 Park Up DC
Park Up DC Park Up DC

Broccoli City, the creators behind one of America’s largest independent music festivals, has partnered with Events DC to launch Park Up DC, a pop-up drive-in movie summer series. The drive-in will be located at RFK Stadium Campus beginning on Friday, July 17, 2020 until the end of October. There will be movies for all ages and they recommend that you cozy in for a double feature. Get your tickets now on the Park Up DC website before they sell out.

3 Drive up to Bengies' Big Screen
Drive up to Bengies' Big Screen Bengies

Bengies, in Middle River, Md., is known for having the biggest movie theater screen in the United States. The Bengies Drive-In Theatre offers triple features almost every Friday and Saturday night and double features on Sunday night with nonstop projection. Upcoming showings include Zooptopia and The World's Greatest Showman. Visitors must purchase tickets online ahead of time so grab yours now and check out their COVID-19 policies before attending. 

4 The Family Drive-In Theatre in Stephens City
The Family Drive-In Theatre in Stephens City The Family Drive-In Theatre

The Family Drive-In Theatre is nothing new to the locals around Stephens City, Virginia. This two-screen drive-in movie theater has been around since 1956. It's pet-friendly so you can bring your furry pal along with you when you catch a flick here. The drive-in is currently doing showings Wednesdays through Sundays so make sure you get your ticket ahead of time to enjoy a timeless film this summer. 

5 Capitol Riverfront
Capitol Riverfront Capitol Riverfront BID

Grab your popcorn and join the Capitol Riverfront BID for a six-week drive-in movie series at the Akridge Lot (First and V St. SW) in Buzzard Point next to Audi Field. Each movie will be a fun, contact-free experience for all ages and will have space for 75 vehicles set at an appropriate social distance. There will be spooky movies featured towards the end of October to get you in the spirit of Halloween. Grab your tickets, grab your snack and grab your blankets to cozy up while watching a feature film. 

6 Ride in Reels
Ride in Reels National Landing BID

Roll in for a drive up movie night in the lot at s 33rd Street and Crystal Drive with the National Landing BID team. They will be hosting movies through the beginning of October in partnership with LIDL. Doors open at 7pm and the movies begin shortly after sunset (between 7:45 and 8pm). Space reservations are required and "walk ins" are not permitted. You must be registered to get their newsletter to to sign up. For more details go to this page

7 Saturday Cinema Series
Saturday Cinema Series The Carlyle Council

Carlyle Neighborhood of Alexandria, VA - The Carlyle Vitality Initiative is hosting a series of movies at John Carlyle Square Park in the Carlyle Neighborhood. This is free to all with movies showing through October 10, 2020. Please visit this page to get your tickets and to read the safety guidelines they put in place to keep everyone safe. 

8 Columbia Pike Movie Nights
Columbia Pike Movie Nights Columbia Pike BID

Through the end of August, Columbia Pike in Arlington, will be hosting free drive-in movie nights. Movies are rated G through PG-13 with subtitles in Spanish. Space is limited and registration is required before you go. Please read the safety guidelines before you register. 

9 Wolf Trap Foundation’s Drive-In Movies at Wolf Trap National Park
 Wolf Trap Foundation’s Drive-In Movies at Wolf Trap National Park The Wolf Trap Foundation

The Wolf Trap Foundation is now having family-friendly, drive-in movies during August. Please read the rules and guidelines before purchasing your ticket. Your family can enjoy classics such as Dirty Dancing, or sing your heart out to Mamma Mia! As of now, Wolf Trap's drive-in is only through the weekend of August. 9th. Please check their page for more info.