Free family movie nights return to Middletown

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Free family movie nights return to Middletown

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Family Movie Night will be held this summer in Middletown for the third straight year. Organizer Jeri Lewis says the events provide families free entertainment and create a sense of community. CONTRIBUTED

Middletown parents looking for free entertainment for their families have another option.

For the third year, Family Movie Nights will be held in city parks and behind the Pendleton Art Center from June 2 through Aug. 25, said Jeri Lewis, community development and marketing director at Kingswell Seminary in Middletown.

She said the movie shown is picked based on the theme of the First Friday downtown event.

Thanks to sponsors, the Friday night movies and snacks are free, according to Lewis.

The movies typically start around 9 p.m., and Lewis encouraged families to get there early. Attendance at past Family Movie Nights had ranged from 150 to 300, depending on the movie and the location, she said.

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HOW TO GO

WHAT: Family Movie Nights

WHEN: 9 p.m. June 2 through Aug. 25

WHERE: Various locations, including city parks and local churches

COST: Free and open to public

MOVIE SCHEDULE:

  • “Storks,” June 2, Pendleton Art Center
  • “Moana,” June 9, Berachah Church
  • “Angry Birds,” June 23, Goldman Park
  • “Finding Dory,” July 14, Jacot Park
  • “Lego Batman,” July 21, Goldman Park
  • “A Dog’s Purpose,” July 28, Damon Park
  • “Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life,” Aug. 11, Berachah Church
  • “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story,” Aug. 18, Goldman Park
  • “The Jungle Book,” Aug. 25, Damon Park

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The movie nights are important because they’re free and they create a sense of community, Lewis said.

“People now have no excuse to walk to the park and watch a movie with their kids,” she said. “It captured my heart one time when I heard a mother say that was the first time seeing a movie with her kid.”

Three years ago, Lewis, concerned there was a lack of family-friendly free events in the city, searched the Internet and found a city that had successfully hosted movie nights. She contacted several local churches and they agreed to sponsor the movies because they wanted to take their ministries outside their walls.

“The perfect opportunity” is how Lewis described the involvement by local churches.

Family Movie Nights take place in community parks, such as Damon Park, Goldman Park and Jacot Park, and downtown Middletown behind the Pendleton Art Center.

Lewis said many community organizations are involved, such as the City of Middletown, Middletown Community Foundation, Kingswell, Forge Middletown, Breiel Church, Berachah Church, Mercy Point Church, Calvary Baptist Church, and the Salvation Army.

Parking is provided at each location, but guests should bring blankets or chairs, she said.

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