Mount Evergreen in Kenora looks to create temporary drive-in

The ski hill in Kenora, Ont., has a big parking lot — maybe just big enough to become a temporary drive-in movie theatre.

Mount Evergreen is looking at purchasing a large screen, along with an FM transmitter, to play movies to help provide some sort of entertainment during COVID-19.

The system has a high price tag — about $32,000 — with the ski hill’s board prepared to pay for half the cost.

“I think the goal would be that it be used … for community events,” said Pam Viinikka, the vice-president of the board.

“The city using it for the Harbourfront, or the Kinsmen using for a fundraiser, or schools using it, those types of things.” 

Viinikka said she hopes other community groups can help pitch in for the screen and system, and could then use it for other events. She said the board has held off asking for individual donations, with many people laid off of work.

She said the ski hill’s board has applied for grants, but those would take months to receive, hence the need to see what other groups could contribute immediately to the purchase.

Viinikka said the idea for the big screen came as she, along with her five sons, were looking for activities during the pandemic.

“We grew up at the drive-in, and our best memories are there. They were community involvement, and you would play on the playground, eat great food and then crawl in your car and curl up and watch a great movie.” 

Viinikka said the company that sells the equipment can deliver the screen and audio system within 10 days of ordering. She said if enough money is raised, it means movies could take place by some point in June.

“We’re just dying to do something right now.”

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