outdoor movie projector

Since being stuck at home, I’ve been trying to think of fun activities to do in the winter months that aren’t only cold-weather friendly, but unique and memorable for my family. One of my favorite activities prior to the pandemic was going to see a movie, especially a drive-in where antsy kids, poor weather, and outside snacks are never an issue. There’s something more relaxed about going to an outdoor movie, but unfortunately, where we live, the closest drive-in is 40 minutes away. So, it got me thinking, “what if I could bring the drive-in to my own driveway?”

Pinnable image of outdoor movie and car

Quarantine during the summer months wasn’t all that bad. We were able to get out of the house pretty regularly, and for the most part, enjoy normal family activities. We rode bikes, went for walks, played at the parks, and enjoyed plenty of outdoor movie nights in the backyard. We hardly knew we were in the middle of a pandemic. But, with winter approaching and the end of daylight savings, my family has been feeling the effects of the shut-in now more than ever. So, we decided to dig out the old projector and create our own outdoor movie experience unlike any other.

Outdoor movie projector screen

Much to our surprise, driveway drive-ins have become one of our favorite winter pastimes. So, without any further ado, I’ll share with you how to have your own outdoor movie experience from the comfort of your driveway while creating fun family memories that will last a lifetime!

Outdoor movie projector on top of car

The ideal set up for a driveway drive-in is a garage door, but just about any home can be set up with the proper equipment for a successful outdoor movie night. You will need a projector, projector screen (either store-bought or homemade), WiFi or a nearby outlet, and if required, a projector screen stand. Of course, you’ll also require your favorite snacks, pillows and blankets, and any other necessities for a fun outdoor movie experience.

Outdoor movie showing "Max" from the Grinch

Outdoor Movie Essentials

Projectors For Outside Movies

Things to consider when choosing a projector for your family’s outdoor movie night:

  • Connects to multiple devices (phones, DVD players, Tablets, Laptops, TV sticks, Game Consoles) via WiFi and/or USB, HDMI, etc.
  • Mirrored Screen capability
  • Built-in audio and Bluetooth audio compatibility so you can listen through the projector OR through your car’s or other Bluetooth speakers.
  • 720 or 1080p, 5000 or more lumens

815x130 banner

Under 100$

Outdoor Movie Projector

100-150$

Outdoor Movie Projector

150-200$

Outdoor Movie Projector

This projector is great and has a rechargeable battery so you can take it camping or anywhere else you’d like for an unforgettable outdoor movie experience!

Outdoor Movie Must-Haves

Outdoor Movie Popcorn Maker Outdoor Movie Popcorn Flavorings Outdoor Movie Popcorn Kernels Outdoor Movie Microwave Popcorn Outdoor Movie Reusable Popcorn Buckets

Outdoor Movie Projector Screens

Things to consider when choosing a projector screen:

  • Built-in grommets to be able to hang and achieve a wrinkle-free viewing experience
  • Thick material for a minimum transparency
  • Wrinkle or crease-free material after gentle stretching
  • If purchasing a screen with a stand, make sure it’s sturdy and prevents slouch. Also, search for a stand that is stable enough for use on uneven surfaces

Under 50$

Outdoor Movie Projector Screen

50-100$

outdoor movie screen

100-150$

Outdoor Movie Projector Screen Outdoor Movie Projector Screen

Cables You May Require To Connect To Your Outdoor Movie Projector:

  • USB C Data Cable
  • Lightening Cable
  • HDMI Cable
  • VGA Cable

Outdoor Movie USB C

That’s A Wrap!

I hope your family enjoys driveway drive-ins as much as mine does. 2020 has surely been a doozy, so it’s nice to have some warm memories of this crazy year to hold on to forever. Let me know what you think of this unique outside cinema idea and share your own experiences down below. Cheers!

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4 Comments on Driveway Drive-Ins: Family Outdoor Movie Nights All Year Round

  1. We do this often. I actually bought the blow up projector screen as part of our party rental business. We now use it often.

  2. I bought a mini projector set up this Christmas one for each household in our family (8). 2020 was so hard with social distancing, now we can have one more way to enjoy our families and friends outdoors. My daughter is already planning her spring movie ine-up including popcorn machine haha. These are absolutely the #1 family gift of the year!!

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