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Sidwell Friends School's Student Newspaper Since 1974


Sidwell Friends School's Student Newspaper Since 1974


Sidwell Friends School's Student Newspaper Since 1974


Park Up DC Offers Washington Residents Safe Movie Showings

Park Up DC spaces cars apart and implements other safety measures like direct food delivery to ensure social distancing during the pandemic. Photo: Park Up DC.

As families in the Washington, D.C. area look for outings and activities that follow social distancing and safety precautions, going to a movie theater may not seem like the best idea.

However, classic drive-in movie theaters have been making a comeback — you get the popcorn and the big screen without having to worry about COVID-19 transmission risks from sitting amidst strangers in an enclosed space. According to its website, Park Up DC is a pop-up experience “that will safely bring the community together for affordably priced movies and

other entertainment.”

Located at the Robert F. Kennedy Campus Lot 5, Park Up DC sells tickets by the car. A giant, 60-foot LED digital screen sits before the parking lot, and viewers can tune into high quality sound through the FM stereo.

Social distancing is ensured, as cars park away from each other to leave viewers in the comfort, privacy and safety of their own vehicle. Mandated safety rules have been put in place for the benefit of all customers; individuals are not allowed outside their cars except to use the restroom and must wear masks at all times outside a vehicle.

Direct food delivery has been one of the bigger measures taken to make the experience safer, according to a representative from Park Up DC. Through its partnership with &pizza, Park Up DC lets moviegoers enjoy a fresh pizza delivered directly to their car. Park Up DC also collaborates with Langston Bar & Grille to serve movie staples like hot dogs, popcorn and box candy.

Park Up DC is a minority-owned business and collaboration between Broccoli City’s planners and Events DC’s production team. Several months ago, the 2020 D.C. Broccoli City Festival, which was set to showcase artists including DaBaby, Roddy Ricch, Megan Thee Stallion and Doja Cat, was canceled due to COVID-19.

“Film and entertainment culture is important to social connection and community happiness, so we pitched Events DC on the idea of a pop-up drive-in when it became clear that entertainment venues such as concert halls and movie theaters were not reopening anytime soon,” Communications Director of Broccoli City Jermon Williams said.

Williams added that Broccoli City is looking to develop digital conferences and master classes in addition to an upcoming national Park Up model.

Broccoli City’s goals go beyond providing entertainment for the community. Its mission is to “reverse years of systemic racism by providing equitable access to resources that enhance the quality of life for Black communities and communities of color for future generations,” Williams said.

The drive-in has been popular among many DMV residents. Freshman Viv Chaudhry said she and her family “wanted to get out of the house and do something” and thought a movie outing would be the perfect idea. With normal theaters posing too much of a risk, they opted for a drive-in


“I would definitely recommend this as a fun outing, especially since movie theaters are still pretty unsafe,” Chaudhry added.

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Erica Lu '24
Erica Lu '24, Editor-in-Chief
Erica Lu is currently Editor-in-Chief of Horizon. She served as a Features Editor in the 2022-2023 school year. Prior to that, she worked as a Staff Writer for the newspaper.
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