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Carlin's Drive-In
Druid Park Dr., Baltimore, Md.
capacity: 1800 cars
years of operation: 1958-77
currently: various business/light industry

The only drive-in ever built within Baltimore city limits, and the second-largest in Maryland, it was located on the site of the former Carlin's Amusement Park, which operated as early as the 1920s and closed in the mid-'50s. Built at a $1,000,000 cost, it featured a 5-lane entrance, an entirely paved lot and a 10,000-square-foot concession building containing a six-lane cafeteria, with a patio for dancing out in front. Other amusements onsite included an elaborate kids' playground, and a roller rink and Olympic-size pool; those last two were the only surviving features of the original amusement park. In the beginning, early arrivals on Monday thru Thursday nights were given free use of the pool until 8 pm. The opening feature on Carlin's giant 64-by-142-foot screen on June 20, 1958 was The Bridge On the River Kwai. In 1961 its owners, a group headed by William J. Fischer, sold it to the Redstone chain (later National Amusements).

Click here for an interactive 1971 aerial photo of the drive-in (zoom in or out, or compare to older or newer photos of the same site). The 1957 aerial shows some of the remnants of Carlin's Park just before the drive-in's construction, the roller rink and pool presumably among them.

here to see the 1974 USGS map depicting Carlin's and the surrounding area.

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