Dowagiac’s 5 Mile Drive-In closes after 62 years

Published 11:03 pm Tuesday, May 7, 2024

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DOWAGIAC — Two of southwest Michigan’s only remaining drive-in theaters are closing their gates this summer.

5 Mile Drive-In, 28190 M-152, Dowagiac, and Sunset Drive-In, 69017 Red Arrow Hwy W., Hartford, are closing their gates, according to the business’ Facebook post.. Neal and Glenda Edwards purchased 5 Mile Drive-In 2006 and the Sunset Drive-In in 2003. Their son, Milton, has operated the two for several years. 5 Mile Drive-in opened in 1961 and Sunset Drive-In in 1948.

“It is with a heavy heart that we announce the closure of 5 Mile Drive-In theater this summer,” the post reads. “As a family- owned establishment, our operations are deeply intertwined with the well-being of our own family members. Unforeseen health challenges within our family require us to take a step back at this time.”

Both 5 Mile Drive-In and its sister theater Sunset Drive-In, 69017 Red Arrow Hwy W., Hartford, have been available for sale since 2021. Readers interested in exploring opportunities further are asked to reach out.

“We can’t thank you all enough for the love and support you’ve shown us,” the post continued. “We hope your summer is filled with fun adventures!”

Of the approximately 130 drive-in theaters that once operated in Michigan, with the closures of 5 Mile and Sunset, just six remain in operation:

  • Cherry Bowl Drive-in Theatre, 9812 Honor Hwy, Honor
  • Hi-Way Drive-In, 2778 Sanilac Rd., Carsonville
  • Getty Drive-In, 920 E. Summit Ave., Muskegon
  • US 23 Drive-In Theatre, 5200 Fenton Rd., Flint
  • Ford Wyoming Drive-In, 10400 Ford Rd., Dearborn
  • Capri Drive-In Theater, 119 W Chicago Rd., Coldwater