Did you blush when Danny Zuko sheepishly pulled off his ring and offered it to Sandra Dee? Does it make you swoon to think of a romantic date at a drive-in theater, watching movies under the stars with your sweetheart? Greased up hair and cheesy grin aside, I think that guy was on to something.

Though today's standard movie-going experience have come to offer up top-shelf liquors, reclining seats and advanced reservations for spots of your choosing in a theater with a 48-foot screen and immersive sound, while you can surely share this experience with family and friends or that special someone, you still might not want to overlook the chance to lounge on a picnic blanket, look up at the stars and enjoy some of America's finest entertainment opportunities.

In an effort to keep the “summer under the stars” alive, we've scouted some seriously inventive and memorable experiences that can get you, your family, friends and your hottest fling, out under the warm evening sky. 

Movies Under the Stars, Malibu Wines, Malibu, California

At Malibu Wines, we take advantage of some stunning scenery to offer a chance to enjoy the silver screen under the silver stars. During the months of June through October, you can join us onsite to experience two of the greatest things about California: wine and movies. With hits ranging from Jurassic Park to Mean Girls, you’re sure to find something you enjoy. And, if movies aren’t your thing, our wine and food trucks are sure to wow you, so come on down and spend a summer night with friends. Check out our screening line-up on the calendar

Shakespeare by the Sea, Various Locations around Los Angeles

Pack your picnic blanket, snacks and “No Fear Shakespeare” translations for some free outdoor theatre. Across the Los Angeles metropolitan area, this long-running theatre group will stage two Shakespearean shows this summer, Othello and Cymbeline. This exceptional nonprofit venture makes the arts accessible to SoCal residents and provides a top-quality entertainment experience against some gorgeous evening backdrops. Explore Shakespeare by the Sea online for some tips and a full list of locations, dates and times

Concerts in the Park, Austin Symphony

Part of the beauty of entertainment in the outdoors is the feeling that you’re part of something bigger. If you’ll excuse my sentimental tendencies, there’s something magical when arts, nature, community and urban scenery come together. Austin, Texas is one city that has mastered this mixture, and they’ve brought their symphony outdoors to the public for a series of free summer concerts. The Austin Symphony describes this experience as a symphony in its own right: 

“Kids frolicking, couples lounging on blankets, old friends in their trusty folding chairs, lone bicyclists and pedestrians who have been distracted from their destinations—all united by the sound of music.”

If you’re around Austin this summer, spend some time marveling at the constellations to the soundtrack of exceptional symphony.

First Wednesday ArtWalk, Jacksonville, Florida

Working its way up many a “Top 10” list, Jacksonville is a city with much to offer those looking for something trendy and “on-the-rise.” Recently deemed a haven for foodies and a hot city for relocation, there’s also a strong artistic undercurrent that resulted in the creation of the free First Wednesday ArtWalk, showcasing a reinvigorated downtown and local artists. On the first Wednesday of each month, year-round, the art museums (contemporary and traditional) open their doors free to the public, as children and families meander through food trucks, street art displays, musicians and breathtaking exhibits. Just blocks from the breathtaking St. Johns River, this artsy exploration is a perfect way to spend summer under the stars.

Shindig on the Green, Asheville, North Carolina

Asheville has continued to secure its reputation as the hipster oasis of Appalachia, hearkening folksy vibes from the mountainous south. The Folk Heritage Committee spearheads a lovely evening concert series from July through September, offering visitors and residents alike a taste of the music, dance and culture of the Appalachian people. In addition to this moonlight concert, Asheville has plenty of local fare and flare for those with more rural tastes. 

 

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