The Museum’s Blog

Merville – 100 Years and Counting Part 6

Merville was home to the Stardust Drive-In Theatre from 1967 to about 1985.

It opened Thursday, September 14, 1967 with a double bill of Fireball 500 and Muscle Beach Party – both starred Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello. As an added attraction, Muscle Beach Party featured the film debut of “Little Stevie” Wonder.

A press release described the theatre as having a 34′ x 80′ screen and the capacity to accommodate 440 cars. It was part of E.W. Bickle Ltd. which, at that time, also operated two indoor theatres, the Van Isle in Campbell River and the E.W. in Courtenay.

Exact date of closure for the Stardust is elusive – no advertisements appeared in the Comox District Free Press for 1986 whereas previous years featured weekly ads in the summer months.