By Amelia Tarallo
Hometown Weekly Staff
It’s rare these days to be able to enjoy a movie outside, as drive-ins aren't quite as numerous as they once were. Residents of Dover, however, have been lucky this summer as the movies have returned to the Dover Town House lawn, courtesy of the hard-working folks at Dover Parks and Recreation and the Dover Town Library.
On Friday, August 6, residents came to enjoy an outdoor showing of the movie "Doolittle" just minutes from their own front doors.
Families arrived at the movie armed with chairs, picnic blankets, and bug spray, ready to set up before the show started. Parents who had grown up with the original film questioned whether they would be watching the Eddie Murphy film from the 1990s or the 2020 film starring Robert Downey Jr. It was the latter.
“It’s going to be interesting to see how it compares to the original,” said one audience member.
Movie nights on the Common have been held since 2014, though this is the first year they were held in conjunction with the Dover Town Library. The library has been hosting its own teen movie nights during the last few summers. “We decided to join forces this year and offer a summer outdoor movies series that would include both teen movies and kids movies,” explained Dover Parks and Recreation Director Mark Ghiloni. There have been three movie nights planned for this year. The first, "Spiderman: Far from Home", was held on June 11. The second was planned for July 16 ("Godzilla vs. Kong") but was canceled due to inclement weather. "Doolittle" represented the final movie for the season.
Despite the mosquitoes, residents were more than happy to be outdoors on a beautiful evening alongside their loved ones. “I think participants have enjoyed them, as it is a chance to get outside and enjoy a movie with friends and family,” said Ghiloni. This last movie night sported around 25 people on the Town House lawn; past movie nights have seen over 100 people in attendance.
It’s not a shock that residents have been attending the movie nights. The chance to enjoy recent blockbusters with family and only having to drive just a few minutes is a win for all residents of Dover.
While COVID seems to have temporarily worn out the novelty of traditionally indoor activities being moved outdoors, the film screenings on the Town House lawn, which have been a town institution for years now, still feel special. Though the seasonal showings are done for the year, the movies are sure to return next summer.