Mt. Airy summer movies aims to spark interest in library area

The grounds of the Lovett Memorial Library in Mt. Airy will become an open-air movie theater this summer, and residents are invited to help pick the flicks.

On six consecutive Friday evenings, from July 8 through Aug. 12, the quiet, mostly-unused grounds next to the Free Library of Philadelphia branch at 6945 Germantown Ave. will be home to Moonlight Movies in Mt. Airy. Seating will begin around 8 p.m., with the movie starting around 8:30 p.m., said Elizabeth Moselle, director of Mt. Airy USA, one of the sponsors.

The Trolley Car Diner, another sponsor, has donated projection equipment for use, and will set up a small concession stand with proceeds going to support the library, Moselle said. An anonymous local donor also provided seed money for the Moonlight Movies series.

Anuj Gupta, president of Mt. Airy USA, said the movie project seemed like a perfect way not only to bring the community together, but to introduce them to the library grounds.

“Here we are on one of the nicest days of the year and we generally don’t see a soul on that land,” he said. “It’s flat parkland, relatively free of bushes, so it could be used for any number of things. It’s accessible, it’s not off limits by any means, but I don’t think the community necessarily thinks of it as a community space.”

A survey that went out earlier this week asks the public to pick which movies they’d like to see, giving 10 choices from a list of family-friendly classics like “West Side Story,” “ET” and “Annie,” along with more modern choices like “Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy” and “My Cousin Vinny.” If none of the choices strike your fancy, there’s a place for suggestions — but hurry, the survey closes on May 15.

In a larger sense, the movie series is part of an overall effort to link together the various blocks of Germantown Avenue that run through Mt. Airy, Gupta said. The ongoing streetscape project, which will wind down this summer, is also part.

“That section of Germantown Avenue has really become a hub of activity, but then you cross Mt. Pleasant and immediately you enter a sort of dead zone,” he said. “We decided we really want to connect the dots better.”

Here is a list of the movies being offered for the summer series:

101 Dalmations

Anchorman

Annie

Back to the Future

Batman Forever

Billy Madison

Bye Bye Birdie

Despicable Me

Dirty Dancing

Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead

Edward Scissorhands

Enchanted

ET

Evan Almighty

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off

Field of Dreams

Finding Nemo

Ghostbusters

Harry Potter

Honey I Shrunk the Kids

Hook

Ice Age

Jumanji

Jurassic Park

Karate Kid (original)

Major League

March of the Penguins

Megamind

Monsters vs. Aliens

Mrs. Doubtfire

My Cousin Vinny

National Treasure

Pirates of the Caribbean

Planet Earth: Oceans

Raiders of the Lost Ark

Ratatouille

Remember the Titans

School of Rock

Shrek 2

Sister Act II

Spider-Man

Spy Kids

The Neverending Story

The Nutty Professor

The Princess Bride

Twilight

Unbreakable

Uncle Buck

Up

West Side Story

To vote click here

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