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Pleasant Prairie, WI: 2013 May Be Last Season for Keno Drive-In; WalMart Project Rumored

Posted on Monday, July 22nd, 2013 1:27 PM by Scott Jentsch

We came across a mention that the Keno Drive-In in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin may be having its last season in operation, so we did a little digging to find out what might be happening.

It turns out that the rumors of the Keno's demise center around the idea that WalMart is looking to build a supercenter on the site. The rumor is bolstered by the fact that the current operator has been quoted in a news article (click the Read link below) that soil tests are being done, the property's owners are saying that 2013 will likely be the drive-in's last year in operation, and that the theater needs to upgrade to a Digital Cinema Projection systems if it wants to continue showing movies in the near future (conventional wisdom says this will be required by 2014 or 2015 at the latest).

Closing a local movie theater will always bring out some opposition and cries of "save the theater," and drive-ins have a following all their own, but now you add the spector of a WalMart coming to town, and there's bound to be some people less than happy with the news. Sure enough, there is a Facebook group titled Save Keno Drive In - No Walmart Here with over 5,200 likes, and there is an online petition opposing the plans that has almost 3,000 signatures.

As of the April 16, 2013 publication date of the aforementioned news article, village officials are denying that anything is happening, but that's little indication of what might or might not be happening. Until things are on public record, nothing is official, and history shows that when a large corporation wants a piece of property, they usually get it, no matter how many comprehensive plans need to be changed, what zoning changes are necessary, and no matter how much local opposition there is.

What is fairly certain, however, is that there aren't many drive-in's left in Wisconsin (we count 11 right now), so if you want to experience the drive-in experience, don't delay! Head over to the Showtimes page for the Keno Drive-In and make your plans today!



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