Koorda Drive In celebrated a milestone on Saturday night when Member for Central Wheatbelt Mia Davies MLA opened its upgraded canteen and kiosk as movie-goers enjoyed the venue’s first screening of 2017.
Ms Davies said $32,934 of Royalties for Regions funding allocated through the 2016 Wheatbelt Community Chest Fund and a collective community effort was making sure the drive in’s renaissance continued.
“Royalties for Regions funds smaller community-driven projects such as the drive in revamp to make sure towns like Koorda remain vibrant and residents can enjoy modern film – in this case through a unique big screen experience,” she said.
“Thanks to multiple upgrades over the years including the introduction of digital projection in 2015 and new sound, the drive in has made a resurgence in Koorda and contemporary film nights have sold as many as 318 tickets.”
Final touches including the paintjob were put on the canteen over the last week, and an overhauled sound system made for a great atmosphere as films Sing and Hidden Figures were projected back-to-back on the 22m screen.
Ms Davies said the project included gutting the former kitchen, replacing electrics, flooring, counters and appliances to create a small-scale commercial kitchen with better customer flow.
The venue’s original Simplex projector, which dates back to 1927, is now on display in the canteen after being replaced last year and the Shire has funded wiring for a new sound system, to which new speakers will soon be connected.
“An illuminated menu board has also been fixed and updated, a new register installed and the big screen repainted thanks to donations from the Shire and CBH,” Ms Davies said.
“It’s fantastic to think only 30 years back Koorda Drive In was shut, yet thanks to ongoing interest and support for its operation from the Shire, CRC and Koorda Primary P&C there has been a modern-day surge in its popularity.”
Koorda is home to one of only three operational drive ins left in WA, with the other two located in Dongara and Kingsley (Perth).
For media enquiries please contact Mia Davies on 9041 1702 (Merredin office), 9622 2871 (Northam office) or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Koorda Drive In patrons attending movies on the weekend. The local drive in has an upgraded canteen and kiosk thanks to Royalties to Regions and community effort.