CARLSBAD — Blankets, chairs, families and friends covered the Army and Navy Academy’s football field to kick off the first night of Carlsbad Village’s Cinema Under the Stars event Sept. 18.
On a larger-than-life inflatable screen measuring 52-by-26 feet provided by Hollywood Outdoor Movies, locals settled in with drinks and snacks to watch the feature presentation of “The Dark Knight” on the cool, late summer evening. The free, all-ages event on the Academy’s field, at 2605 Carlsbad Blvd., was a relaxing way to start the weekend surrounded by great company.
“It’s good family fun,” said Luke Blair of Oceanside. “In this economy, free is good.”
As the sun finally went down and the temperature dropped with it, the movie began to the delight of everyone who had patiently waited for it to start. Some had seen the movie several times before, while others were watching it for the first time, and they were all treated to a unique viewing experience on a large screen in the great outdoors. Even with the train tracks right behind the screen, the sound system managed to block the noise out for an uninterrupted viewing of the movie.
“We came out to support the community, it was great,” said Leucadia resident Dennis Peacock, who would like to see more communities host similar events.
Event organizers encouraged people to “go green” and ride their bikes to the event, where a bike valet was available for a small fee. Food vendors serving tacos, barbecue and standard movie theater fare were also available for those who didn’t bring snacks with them.
“We think the first weekend went really well,” said Robin Young, executive director of the Carlsbad Village Association, or CVA. “We doubled attendance on Saturday night which was really nice.”
Young is expecting a larger family presence when Cinema Under the Stars returns with “Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian” on Sept. 25. Academy Award-winning “Slumdog Millionaire” will be shown Sept. 26 to close out the well-received free events. For more information, contact the CVA at (760) 434-2553.