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Drive-in movie at Fort Mason Fort Mason Flix

6 Throwback Drive-In Movie Theaters in San Francisco and the Bay Area

Plus, where to eat nearby — because it’s not a hot date without snacks

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We’ve always had a few good old-fashioned drive-in movie theaters around the Bay Area, but even more have been popping up during the pandemic, and it’s easy to understand the appeal. Indoor movies might feel a little alarming these days, but it’s easier to social distance from the comfort of one’s own car, snuggled up in the back with, perhaps, some wool blankets, and catch a flick under the stars. From right up on the waterfront of the bay to grassy county fairgrounds, here are six sweet spots to park it at a drive-in. Plus, where to eat nearby, because whether you’re crushing popcorn and candy or craving more substantial tacos or falafel — it’s not a hot date without snacks.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Lark Theater

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549 Magnolia Ave
Larkspur, CA 94939
(415) 924-5111
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The charming old Art Deco cinema in Larkspur moved the movies outside this summer, and while they’re winding down for the season, it’s worth catching the last few flicks for Halloween, which include Beetlejuice and Rocky Horror

What to snack: Stop by the new Hog Island in Larkspur Landing before or after the show for cups of cozy chowder and exceptional grilled cheese sandwiches.

Art Deco exterior of Lark Theater Lark Theater

2. Fort Mason

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2 Marina Blvd
San Francisco, CA 94123

The Fort Mason drive-in made headlines this summer for its breathtaking view of the bay, putting up the big screen amid the historic buildings on the waterfront. Halloween weekend is featuring Ghostbusters and Interview with a Vampire, and November highlights include the Goonies and Shaft

What to snack: Off the Grid is partnering and parking it at the movies, with a rotating cast of food trucks, including Cochinita tacos, Mozzeria pizza, Capelo’s barbecue, and Waffle Roost chicken and waffles. 

Drive-in movie theater at Fort Mason Flix at Fort Mason

3. Pier 70

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20th street, Illinois St
San Francisco, CA 94107

A pop-up drive-in pulled into the historic shipyards off of Potrero, supposedly just for the month of October, but here’s hoping they extend. The thrilling movie selections have included Bladerunner, Blindspotting, and Invasion of the Body Snatchers

What to snack: La Cocina is the official partner for this dinner-and-a-movie deal, such as Mexican street tacos from Mi Morena SF. 

Tacos from Mi Morena Mi Morena

4. West Wind Solano Drive-In

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1611 Solano Way
Concord, CA 94520
(925) 825-1951
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West Wind was the drive-in destination in Concord well before the pandemic, offering the iconic suburban parking-lot experience. And it’s not winding down for the season, the fun continues with outdoor movies rolling into November and December, including Frozen and Wonder Woman 1984

What to snack: The tacos dorados at Tortilleria el Molino have inspired their own fan following, for crispy shells stuffed with ground beef and potatoes and avalanched with shredded lettuce. 

Tacos from El Molino in Concord Tortillas El Molino

5. Alameda County Fairgrounds

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4501 Pleasanton Ave
Pleasanton, CA 94566
(925) 426-7600
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The grassy fairgrounds are usually home to the hundred-year-old county fair, but instead of rides and games, cars are pulling in for fun movies this year. Movies have included Clueless and Hairspray over the summer, and Sleepy Hollow for Halloween. 

What to snack: Food trucks will be in attendance, selling barbecue, churros, and candy. 

Movies at Alameda County Fair Alameda County Fair

6. West Wind Capitol Drive-In

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3630 Hillcap Ave
San Jose, CA 95136
(408) 226-2251
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West Wind has another retro-classic drive-in in San Jose, with a generous blacktop and fully loaded snack bar. Movie selections look similar across locations, from Halloween gore through holiday favorites later in the season. 

What to snack: If you really want to commit to the all-American experience of never getting out of the car, swing by the Falafel Drive-In on the way to the show, for the iconic pita sandwiches, koubby meatballs, and baklava. 

West Wind Drive-In movie theater West Wind Drive-In

1. Lark Theater

549 Magnolia Ave, Larkspur, CA 94939
Art Deco exterior of Lark Theater Lark Theater

The charming old Art Deco cinema in Larkspur moved the movies outside this summer, and while they’re winding down for the season, it’s worth catching the last few flicks for Halloween, which include Beetlejuice and Rocky Horror

What to snack: Stop by the new Hog Island in Larkspur Landing before or after the show for cups of cozy chowder and exceptional grilled cheese sandwiches.

549 Magnolia Ave
Larkspur, CA 94939

2. Fort Mason

2 Marina Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94123
Drive-in movie theater at Fort Mason Flix at Fort Mason

The Fort Mason drive-in made headlines this summer for its breathtaking view of the bay, putting up the big screen amid the historic buildings on the waterfront. Halloween weekend is featuring Ghostbusters and Interview with a Vampire, and November highlights include the Goonies and Shaft

What to snack: Off the Grid is partnering and parking it at the movies, with a rotating cast of food trucks, including Cochinita tacos, Mozzeria pizza, Capelo’s barbecue, and Waffle Roost chicken and waffles. 

2 Marina Blvd
San Francisco, CA 94123

3. Pier 70

20th street, Illinois St, San Francisco, CA 94107
Tacos from Mi Morena Mi Morena

A pop-up drive-in pulled into the historic shipyards off of Potrero, supposedly just for the month of October, but here’s hoping they extend. The thrilling movie selections have included Bladerunner, Blindspotting, and Invasion of the Body Snatchers

What to snack: La Cocina is the official partner for this dinner-and-a-movie deal, such as Mexican street tacos from Mi Morena SF. 

20th street, Illinois St
San Francisco, CA 94107

4. West Wind Solano Drive-In

1611 Solano Way, Concord, CA 94520
Tacos from El Molino in Concord Tortillas El Molino

West Wind was the drive-in destination in Concord well before the pandemic, offering the iconic suburban parking-lot experience. And it’s not winding down for the season, the fun continues with outdoor movies rolling into November and December, including Frozen and Wonder Woman 1984

What to snack: The tacos dorados at Tortilleria el Molino have inspired their own fan following, for crispy shells stuffed with ground beef and potatoes and avalanched with shredded lettuce. 

1611 Solano Way
Concord, CA 94520

5. Alameda County Fairgrounds

4501 Pleasanton Ave, Pleasanton, CA 94566
Movies at Alameda County Fair Alameda County Fair

The grassy fairgrounds are usually home to the hundred-year-old county fair, but instead of rides and games, cars are pulling in for fun movies this year. Movies have included Clueless and Hairspray over the summer, and Sleepy Hollow for Halloween. 

What to snack: Food trucks will be in attendance, selling barbecue, churros, and candy. 

4501 Pleasanton Ave
Pleasanton, CA 94566

6. West Wind Capitol Drive-In

3630 Hillcap Ave, San Jose, CA 95136
West Wind Drive-In movie theater West Wind Drive-In

West Wind has another retro-classic drive-in in San Jose, with a generous blacktop and fully loaded snack bar. Movie selections look similar across locations, from Halloween gore through holiday favorites later in the season. 

What to snack: If you really want to commit to the all-American experience of never getting out of the car, swing by the Falafel Drive-In on the way to the show, for the iconic pita sandwiches, koubby meatballs, and baklava. 

3630 Hillcap Ave
San Jose, CA 95136

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