Jun 3, 2023

Submitted For The Approval Of The Mahoning Society...

Werewolf Weekend Night One
Mahoning Drive-In Theater - Lehighton, PA
Sometimes things don't go according to plan, but then they turn into something pretty awesome that wouldn't have existed otherwise.  That was the case last night at the Mahoning Drive-In Theater.

Night One of Werewolf Weekend was supposed to be a double feature of the 1985 comedy Teen Wolf and the 1985 horror flick Silver Bullet.  As we were driving to the theater, we noticed that the traffic light on Route 443 before we come to Seneca Road was out.  I thought that was odd, but hey, screws fall out all the time... the world's an imperfect place, right?  Soon afterward, we got in line at the front gate and turned on the radio to 89.3 FM, but there was no music.  Ok... no big deal... maybe the person DJing that night got stuck in traffic, or maybe there was some issue with the equipment.  It happens.  However, we learned that these two things were related when Dave checked us in.

I'm not sure if there was a lightning strike or if the wind caused the damage, but at around 5:00 pm, several power lines fell which caused a brush fire and a power outage to the entire area.  Some of the folks we talked to on the lot told us that they saw blue flames erupting from one of the poles or possibly from the transformer.  Whatever the case was, the result was the same - there was no power at the Mahoning Drive-In Theater, and there was a good chance that last night's double feature wasn't going to happen.

What happened on the lot was the perfect illustration of why I love this place as much as I do.  Just about any other business in this situation would have probably put a closed sign on the front door, issued refunds, and called it a night.  Instead, they hung in until 10:00 pm in the hopes that the power would come back on and we'd still be able to enjoy the double feature.

JT and his brother built an incredible photo op on the stage outside the concession building, and they rounded up some cars to point their headlights at the stage so that folks could get a picture with the werewolf.

I hope there are some silver bullets in this thing!

There were quite a few folks who stayed, and most of us spent the evening wandering around in the dark or hanging out in the concession building, stopping to chat with each other and pet the occasional dog.  It was generally just a bunch of people who like movies enjoying the vibe.

Unfortunately the power did not come back on, but the night turned into a unique experience that probably would not have happened in any other way.  Louie Sullivan, who is a longtime fan of the Mahoning and who recently began working at their merch table, brought along his copy of Stephen King's 1983 novella Cycle Of The Werewolf, which was adapted into a film that was meant to be the second half of last night's double feature, Silver Bullet.  So, he took to the stage while a bunch of us gathered around, and by the light of the full moon and the headlights of several vehicles, he read the entire book to us from cover to cover.

To just say that he read the book does Louie a disservice.  For over two hours, this dude told the story like we were all members of the Midnight Society, and he did the voices for all of its characters, including a brief but hilarious Nashville-Slovakian accent that only made the experience that much better.

Show banner designed by Andrew Kern

So, what does this all mean for Werewolf Weekend?

It means that all four films will be played back-to-back-to-back-to-back in a massive Saturday night dusk-til-dawn quadruple feature.  Dude... four classic werewolf movies at a drive-in under the light of the full moon.  It doesn't get much better than that!