Drive-in theaters are not as common as they used to be. In fact, you rarely ever see them and when you do, they are more of a novelty than something to do on the weekends. In Charlotte, North Carolina, however, one family took their love of movies and raised it up a notch. Their home basement was converted to a drive-in movie theater-style entertainment space.
Inside the theater, you will find an atmosphere as if you were in a barn. It is more comfortable, however, thanks to the leather recliners and shag green carpet. There is also a country mural, making you feel as if you’re in the great outdoors.
Tracie Stier-Johnson has four children but she still managed to find time to design this 600 ft.² home theater. She had a little bit of help from Weber Design Group’s Travis Hite.
“I wanted the space to feel like it was in a barn, but also like we were outside at a drive-in,” Stier-Johnson told Houzz. “The mural looks like the view you’d see from a barn and keeps the room from feeling like a closed-in theater.”
The artist included horses on the wall because her daughter loves riding them. The horses’ names are Rocco and Joe.
Of course, what would a drive-in theater be without an old pickup truck to watch the movie? A turquoise Chevy pickup truck replica is there to fill the need. You can get in the bed of the ‘truck’ and cozy up with pillows, blankets and plenty of room. You also appreciate the starry lights hanging above the truck that makes you feel as if you are under a night sky.
There is a story behind the replica Chevy found in the basement. Stier-Johnson has a vintage truck and she was prepared to use it but it was too rusty. She decided to get in touch with a NASCAR car builder and he built the replica using molds of a 1968 Chevrolet C10 step side pickup truck.
She chose turquoise because it reminds her of a light blue sky on a cloudless day. “I love turquoise, and I used it all over the rest of the house, so the color choice was a no-brainer,” Stier-Johnson said.
The taillights of the truck are hooked up to the A/V system and you can even see a ‘dashboard’ if you look through the rear window. There is even the steering wheel painted on the wall! Since the family moved from Wisconsin to North Carolina, they decided to use ‘VIA WI’ for the license plate.
Something else that you would expect to find in a barn is a hayloft. A shelf was included up high to hold hay along with the welcome sign made out of horseshoes.
Of Course, There’s a Concession Stand!
Anybody who goes to a drive-in would expect to go have a soda and a bag of popcorn. You will find a concession stand in the basement theater that has a vintage Coca-Cola machine, popcorn machine, and a stocked snack bar. There is even a wheelbarrow that catches the popcorn that comes out of the hidden popcorn machine.
There is a small kitchen behind the candy counter that includes a sink, storage area, and an old-style red refrigerator.
If that wasn’t enough, there is even a pizza bar where you can enjoy your meals and treats. A light made from a repurposed truck radiator is hanging from the ceiling and there is even a real horse stall door on the reproduction horse stall.
On most movie nights, the family will order pizza or Chinese food.
“Movie nights with our girls are our favorite thing,” Stier-Johnson said. “It’s one of the most-used rooms in the house.”
This is not the only part of the fantastic Charlotte Lake home that includes plenty of charm. Inside you will find a spiral staircase, a beautiful kitchen, and a slide!
You can follow this link to see more of this amazing home.