Making Outdoor Movie Magic

By Chris Dato  •  October 02, 2014

My addiction to cinema has left me painfully aware of the astronomically high price of movie tickets. In fact, I have already shared some of my favorite secrets to save on going to the movies. However, the inside of a theater is not the only appropriate venue in which to enjoy a movie. Sometimes, the movie going experience can be just as much about the atmosphere as it is about the movie itself. With that in mind, let’s look at some of the less traditional big screen settings you don’t want to miss out on.


Most cities put on public movie screening events, often as part of a seasonal series. These ‘movies in the park’ or ‘movies at the beach’ are typically held in the late afternoon, and feature movies that are mostly family friendly. All you need to bring is a chair to sit on and junk to snack on! Better yet, satisfy both needs with this Coleman Elite Cooler Quad Chair for Target. Here is Santa Monica, there is currently a month long outdoor movie series going on called Front Porch Cinema, presented by Eat/See/Hear. The event, which is very proudly dog friendly, features tons of gourmet food trucks, and live music from when the gates open at 6 until the movie at 7:30. The movies are shown on a 40 foot inflatable screen on Santa Monica Pier, at sunset. What could possibly make that more perfect? Oh yeah, an admission price of free!   




Cinespia is a particularly unique experience that has gained a cult following in Southern California. Screenings are held under the open night sky, on the lawn of the Hollywood Forever Cemetery. The website recommends bringing a blanket, pillows, and a picnic dinner as well as wine or beer if you are of age. Next on the schedule is the cult classic Beetlejuice, which will be appropriately shown in the beautifully creepy locale on October 25th.


Even if you are unable to find events such as these in your city, an unforgettably different movie experience may be closer than you think. In fact, it can take place right in your backyard. With a few affordable accessories, you will be ready to host your own unique movie night at a moment’s notice.


For watching movies in your backyard, the first thing you will need is a projector. Look no further than the 3M Streaming Projector, powered by the Roku Stick. If you are unfamiliar with Roku, it is a set-top streaming device, and is compatible with all the major streaming services such as Netflix and Hulu Plus. The projector Features a rechargeable battery and wall unit, built-in speakers, and can even be turned straight up to project onto the ceiling! The Roku Stick can be plugged directly into the 3M Streaming Projector for immediate enjoyment. These two devices are sold as a pair, and will provide you with the means to project for mass viewing as well as libraries of content to choose from.


Also, don’t let the cold hinder your plans to enjoy movies by moonlight. For under $60, you and the whole family could be cozy around this Threshold Round Folding Fire Pit from Target. Target also has a host of stylish and affordable patio heaters, such as this AZ Garden Patio Tall Heater.  




It is important to remember that going to the movies is often about much more than the movie you see. Grab a date, or get a group of friends together, and turn an ordinary night at the theater into a beloved movie memory. Lights, camera, action!


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Chris Dato Chris Dato A Southern California kid born and raised, Chris is happiest with sunglasses on his face and sand under his back. Although a self-proclaimed master money saver, he prefers the term 'responsibly frugal' to 'cheap.'

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