Location: Stapylton Rd, Yatala
Capacity: 375 Cars
Operator: Souris Bros.
Now a twin, as of 2004, the Yatala drive-in as it is now called can finally offer more first run movies. The new screen is at the rear of the former single screen field and includes an extended projection building. This drive-in has survived in an area part way between Brisbance and the Gold Coast and today draws from both markets. It is now the only operating drive-in in south east Queensland. This area once boasted up to 20 drive-in theatres and you now have to drive up to Wonga outside Gympie to see another. The pleasant surrounds add to the feel of this drive-in which sits just off the main Highway. If you are a Ford V8 motor racing fan then the Dick Johnson Racing workshops are right next door to this venue.
This is screen one at Beenleigh and is not as large as some of its southern cousins, but sits nice and close to the front ramps. In fact every car position in the drive-in is a good one for either screen. Asphalt and speakers are all maintained in exceptional condition.
When ever I visit a drive-in in northern Australia I think back to those freezing nights in Melbourne in mid-Winter, rain and 2.00 am when we did our ramp tramp after every show. Each speaker would be re-hung on the post, the volume turned down and the speaker and junction box checked for damage. Any units that had survived a car driving off with the speaker still in the window was noted or retrived to the projection room for repair the following day prior to the show. A classic scenario would be, film ends, speaker is turned down, seatbelts fastened, food scraps and rubbish thrown out the window and then our hero drives off forgetting all about the speaker in the window! Bang, they were generally so embarrassed they made for the exit gate very quickly - broken side window or not!
This is one neat and clean snack bar/projection building. Just the place to visit on a warm night in southern Queensland. Well done Souris Bros. Photos by Buddy and Matthew Oct 1999.
Buddy's hamburger rating, 9/10.