NFL officials are keeping optimistic about welcoming back fans in full come September. But for the time being, NFL stadiums are shifting their focus to drive-in events that guarantee social distance safety.
Gillette Stadium, Raymond James Stadium and more are pivoting towards drive-in events this summer while football remains in the offseason and high-profile concert tours are largely on pause. The former will feature a number of film screenings presented by Showcase Cinemas while local theaters remain closed.
“Drive-ins are a big part of Showcase Cinemas’ 80-year history as the company was one of the first theater chains to introduce and embrace the drive-in concept throughout the 20th century,” company VP of global marketing Mark Malinowski said in a statement. “This will be our first step towards reopening Showcase Cinemas with new health and safety protocols in the coming weeks.”
Film screenings will begin this weekend with ticket proceeds going towards the Foxboro Food Pantry. Gillette Stadium was initially scheduled to hold large-scale concerts from Taylor Swift, Kenny Chesney and more in addition to the New England Revolution. But with most live concerts called off and the MLS season suspended, New England Patriots football is expected to be the next major event held in the stadium.
The new home stadium of former Patriots Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski is also getting in on the drive-in scene. Tampa’s Raymond James Stadium will reportedly hold a four-day bash dubbed the Parking Lot Social. Family-friendly activities like bingo, karaoke, trivia and film screenings are in store for the event – all taking place within the safety of your car.
Miami’s Hard Rock Stadium launched the movement by announcing earlier this week that it was setting up a drive-in theater on the field plus a separate open-air theater outside the complex.