River District Vancouver is a neighbourhood in South Vancouver that used to offer free drive-in movie nights on Saturdays in September and October.
Note: River District Drive-in Movie events have not taken place regularly since 2018. HOWEVER, there is a special outdoor movie event taking place on June 28th, 2022.
River District’s Drive-in Movies
In the fall of 2018 River District Vancouver hosted six free outdoor drive-in movie nights. Each one was a double feature and they took place on the Saturday evenings of September 15, 22 and 29 as well as October 13, 20 and 27.
Since then there have not been regular outdoor movie nights in the area. In 2022, however, there is a special outdoor movie event on June 28th. It’s the first “Movie Under the Stars” event hosted by the River District.
The film being shown is Black Panther, and tickets are $10 (with a goodie bag included with admission). Proceeds from the event are going to the South Vancouver Family Place. The screening is being held 3302 North Arm Avenue.
You must bring your own chairs and/or blankets to the event. The movie is scheduled to begin at dusk (around 10:00 pm). Children ages 11 and younger are free.
River District’s 2018 Movie Schedule
Below was the River District’s Drive-in Movie Night schedule for 2018, the most recent time that there were regular drive-in movies at the venue.
- September 15, 2018 – Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom (PG) and Jurassic Park 1 (PG). Show times were at approximately 7:45 and 10:00 pm.
- September 22, 2018 – Ant Man & The Wasp (PG) and Solo: A Star Wars Movie (PG). Show times were at approximately 7:30 and 9:45 pm.
- September 29, 2018 – Incredibles 2 (PG) and Deadpool 2 (18+). Show times were at approximately 7:30 and 9:55 pm.
- October 13, 2018 – Mama Mia: Here We Go Again! (G) and Dirty Dancing (PG). Show times were at approximately 7:30 and 9:45 pm.
- October 20, 2018 – Hotel Transylvania 3 (G) and The Strangers (14+). Show times were at approximately 7:30 and 9:30 pm.
- October 27, 2018 – Frankenweenie (G) and IT (14+). Show times were at approximately 7:30 and 9:30 pm.
Thanks River District Vancouver!
The above movies were put on and hosted by the fine folks at River District Vancouver. For a list of other events coming up in the neighbourhood, see the River District Vancouver website.
About the Event and Things to Know
Below are some important things to know about the Drive-in Movie Nights including the venue’s location and how to book your free tickets.
- Movie Night Location – River District Vancouver is located in South Vancouver between Boundary Road and around Kerr Street. The entrance to the Drive-in Movie venue is located at the corner of Boundary Road and North Fraser Way (which is about half a block south of Marine Way). To get to the movies, just head to the very southern end of Boundary Road.
- “Purchase” Your Free Tickets – Although Movie Nights at the River District were free, attendees needed to register in advance. They were popular events, with limited space, so if they happen again reserve your spot in advance! When making your reservations, you can select just the first film, just the second or both shows by clicking “double-feature”.
- Movie Times – Gates opened at 6:30 pm and the first films started at dusk (which meant sometime between around 7:00 and 7:45 pm depending on the week).
- Donations are Encouraged – The movie nights were free events, but donations were encouraged. Cash proceeds were donated to South Vancouver Family Place, which is a great organization and worthwhile cause.
- Watch One or Both Shows – You could watch the first movie and then either stay for the second or go home. You could also book a ticket to see just the second show and arrive after the first movie finished. The choice was up to you. That being said, if you wanted to stay for the second film you needed to select the second film or “double-feature” when making your reservation.
About River District Vancouver
The River District is a modern development in South Vancouver that features 250,000 square feet of shops, eateries and everyday services. It’s a growing and increasingly vibrant community and home to fabulous events throughout the year.
In the summer River District Vancouver hosts a number of free community events with live music and family-friendly entertainment. For four years, each fall, the venue also hosted a series of Drive-in Movie Nights.
Tips and Advice
Below are some tips and suggestions to help you make the most out of your Drive-in Movie Night experience at River District Vancouver.
TIP #1: In 2017 admission to Drive-in Movie Nights cost $25 per vehicle for a single-feature movie and $35 for a double-feature movie, or $5 less for tickets purchased online. In 2018 the shows were FREE, which was awesome! The previous year, when there was a cost, the events were tremendously popular! In 2018, when the shows were all free, they sold out in advance! Consequently, if they do the movies again, and do them for free, reserve your spot early!
TIP #2: Each year some people take their chances and just drive to the venue and show up, without making a reservation. There’s a chance they’ll get in, but people with tickets purchased in advance get priority spots.
TIP #3: Anyone without a car can just show up with their lawn chairs and go right in, without having to register in advance. If you hope to go in with your car, but haven’t pre-booked your free ticket, put some lawn chairs in the back of your car just in case you have to park elsewhere and then walk in.
TIP #4: If you plan to enjoy the movies under the stars in your lawn chairs, or you think there’s a chance you’ll get in but your vehicle won’t (because you didn’t reserve your spot in advance), take blankets and wear lots of warm clothes! It gets cold at night in autumn!
TIP #5: Even though the movies are free, don’t forget that you need to “purchase” your free tickets in advance. Also, don’t forget to take your pre-purchased “free” tickets with you, and, if planning to see both films, be sure to select the “double-feature” option.
TIP #6: There are food trucks on site, so take an appetite! Scotiabank also sometimes gives away free popcorn.
TIP #7: Pets are permitted on site provided that they are on leash in the parking lot and inside your vehicle during the show.
TIP #8: Parking spots for the show are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. Arrive early for the best locations!
For a list of other upcoming events in the area check out the River District’s Calendar of Events.
Dozens of free outdoor movies are shown in Vancouver and throughout the Lower Mainland each year. Normally they just take place in the summer. The September and October movies at the River District are the exception. To see where free movies usually take place in the summer time, click Vancouver Summer Outdoor Movies.