The choice of Moonstruck for the inaugural “Movie Night in the Park” was so perfect, we thought Van Ness Main Street and UDC had planned it that way. The weather was great for a night at the UDC amphitheater. And a sellout crowd spread out blankets and picnics under a full strawberry moon.
— C on the scene (@Conthescene) June 25, 2021
The first movie night on June 23rd went off without a hitch thanks to the careful planning and work by Van Ness Main Street executive director Gloria Garcia, VNMS marketing and small business consultant Cherie Lester, and volunteers.
“The VNMS Events Committee has been a terrific help from start to finish and we’ve had local residents offering to lend a hand as well,” Lester told Forest Hills Connection.
But they can’t control everything. A week later, a thunderstorm delayed Moana by a few minutes, and another storm forced the show to end about half an hour early.
“It’s a hard call to make because summer showers are sometimes over fast but safety is most important,” Lester said.
Now showing! Moana at the UDC Amphitheater! pic.twitter.com/v4hStGwEDn
— Van Ness Main Street (@VanNessMainSt) July 1, 2021
People snapped up all of the free reservations for that night too, and Lester tells Forest Hills Connection that the next four movie nights are sold out as well. However, she says, a number of people cancel their reservations the day before the event, so that’s a good time to check the Eventbrite page for openings.
The remaining Wednesday night films and dates are Jurassic Park on July 14th, Mama Mia! on July 21st, Black Panther on August 11th, and Hidden Figures on August 18th. The Coco showing on Friday, September 24th will be part of the Van Ness Art All Night festivities. Van Ness Main Street will open up reservations for Coco this week at VNMSMovies.eventbrite.com.
The movies start at 9 p.m., but attendees are encouraged to arrive starting at 8 p.m., with picnics that Van Ness Main Street hopes will be picked up from local restaurants.
“I was happy to see local pizza boxes and take-out picnics during the showing of Moonstruck,” Lester said. “I’ve also heard several movie-goers took advantage of Uptown Market’s delicious Movie Night special, sangria, flatbreads and snacks.”
Van Ness Main Street and UDC’s “Movie Night in the Park” has picked up more sponsors since that first moonlit night. Calvert Woodley Fine Wines & Spirits remains on board as a host sponsor. The technical sponsor is Superlative Events. Additional sponsorship is provided by Comet Ping Pong, Buck’s Fishing & Camping, Muchas Gracias, and Heidi Brown.
Forest Hills Connection is a program of Van Ness Main Street.