drive-in theaters

Dana Point Harbor's Becoming a Drive-in

Well, on one very special cinematic night. Enjoy "Moana," near the water, in mid-July.


What to Know

  • "Moana" screens near the water on July 16
  • UPDATE: Now sold out
  • Several music events are headed for the harbor in the weeks to come

Debating the biggest summer trends?

It's a time-honored fall tradition, for friends who like to look back and ponder what summer songs captured the public's shared fancy, what clothes were talked about for a week or two, and the books and movies that kept us captivated while the temperature was high.

Without a doubt, the drive-in has made a resurgence during the summer of 2020, due to the coronavirus-related closings of traditional, sit-inside cinemas.

This means that actual drive-ins, those places with permanent screens and spots for cars, are welcoming new customers, while other places are offering pop-up drive-ins for those looking for a different movie-watching experience.

Dana Point Harbor is one of those locations, and the drive-in planned for July 16 is beautifully suited to the ocean-adjacent setting.

It's "Moana," an instant Disney classic that finds its thrilling story, and literal heart, in the big water.

If you haven't ever enjoyed "Moana" while sitting a short walk from the waves, plan your visit to Dana Point Harbor on July 16 for the car-ready movie night.

The film begins at 8 o'clock, but arrive early for live music at 6:30. The cost of your car's entry?

It's $25, and tickets can be found here. (Update: This is now sold out. But music events are ahead: "Every Thursday through July welcomes live music performances at The Wharf Courtyard by Frisby Cellars and Jon’s Fish Market from 4-6 p.m. Singer-songwriter Zach Churchill will perform on July 9 and 16 and country pop artist Olivia Ooms will perform on July 23 and 30.")

And if you and the family want to dine before or during the film in your car, you can order a to-go box or two from a local eatery.

The pop-up drive-in and "Moana" event is all part of Dana Point Harbor's "You, Me + Vitamin Sea" programming, which is giving visitors to the Pacific-pretty destinations safe-minded recreation ideas during the summer of 2020.

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