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Leisure Services

Posted on: May 25, 2018

Free summer movies return to Dogwood Park and Cookeville Depot

People gather to watch a movie at Dogwood Park.

COOKEVILLE – Friday nights in Cookeville are flickering to life with free movies at Dogwood Park in June and the Cookeville Depot Museum in July.

The June series, After Dark Movies in the Park, presented by Cookeville Leisure Services and State Rep. Ryan Williams, continues June 22 with "Sing" and concludes June 29 with "Black Panther." Movies begin shorty after dusk at 30 E. Broad St.

“This year’s line-up has had something for everyone,” Chad McDonald, Leisure Services cultural arts superintendent, said. “We have been featuring a wide variety of titles – animated films, musicals and action-adventure flicks – that we hope has appealed to a large cross section of the community.”

The After Dark movie series has become a popular start to the summer season, attracting hundreds in front of Dogwood Park’s performance pavilion. Attendees may bring lawn chairs and blankets or use the permanent tiered seating. Concessions are available.

“It is an excellent opportunity for the entire family to come to the park and spend an evening together in a beautiful setting,” McDonald said.

On Friday nights in July, the Cookeville Depot Museum will present Depot Summer Cinema at 8 p.m. at 116 W. Broad St. The series starts July 6 with the 1985 time travel adventure “Back to the Future.”

“This highly anticipated classic movie series is attended by several hundred people each year,” Beth Thompson, Cookeville museums manager, said. “Families love to stretch out on a blanket or sit in their lawn chairs and munch popcorn and sip cold drinks while enjoying a free classic movie they probably haven’t seen in years.”

Each evening has a different theme – Big Kids’ Night, Date Night, Christmas in July and Sing-Along Night.

“For Big Kids’ Night, we try to select a 1980s hit (“Back to the Future”) that appeals to the big kids among us,” Thompson said.

Date Night typically features a romantic comedy from the 1940s or 1950s. On July 13, it’ll be 1951’s “Father’s Little Dividend.”

Christmas in July will be celebrated July 20 with 1964’s “Santa Claus Conquers the Martians.”

“These old, unintentionally hilarious sci-fi films have become a mainstay of the Summer Cinema lineup,” Thompson said. “They’re definitely a crowd favorite.”

The series wraps up July 27 with Sing-Along Night, featuring 1939’s “The Wizard of Oz.”

What attracts people to movies at the depot?

“It’s that wonderful nostalgic feeling of being outside under the stars while watching a favorite film – similar to the feel of a drive-in theater,” Thompson said.

Popcorn and drinks will be available for $1 each.

For more information about summer movies at Dogwood Park and the Cookeville Depot Museum, call Cookeville Leisure Services at 931-520-4386.