I’m a child of the 90’s, but even still I have fond memories of going to the drive-in movie theater near where I grew up. One of my earliest movie memories was seeing “Free Willy” on a giant 105’ screen in Lehighton, PA at the Mahoning Drive-In. This drive-in, along with countless others, is at risk of closing as we quickly move into the digital age. Honda is trying to help.

The movie industry has mandated digital conversion to all theaters by December 31, 2013. There is a lot of components we typically don’t think of when it comes to making the transition to digital. The cost of a complete digital conversion, coming in at $80,000+, includes purchasing the server needed to receive the film file and the projector to show the films. The price tag also includes retrofitting existing projection booths for the removal of old equipment and the installation of new equipment.

Honda has introduced ‘Honda Project Drive-In’ to help save the iconic outdoor venues through digital projectors. As Hollywood and the giant multiplex movie theater chains seamlessly have transitioned from film to digital, most drive-ins are small, family-owned businesses that simply can’t afford the cost of installing a digital projector.

From Honda’s Project Drive-In site, “We want to preserve this iconic part of American car culture. So we’re taking the first step by starting a drive-in fund and donating 5 digital projectors. Your vote decides where they go.”

Honda also has an IndieGoGo project to raise awareness and funds to help save more than just the five drive-ins that win the voting on the Project Drive-In website. Funds raised on IndieGoGo will go towards the purchase of digital projectors for other participants in Honda Project Drive-In.

While there is no guarantee that Honda can save a drive-in theater near you or I, it is still worth it to get on the site and vote and even chip in to the IndiGoGo fund. Don’t let these icons of American culture go dark.

Please comment and tell us your favorite drive-in movie memory!

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