Entertainment

From Drive-In Theatres To Drive-In Drag Shows, The Coronavirus Is Forcing Us To Rethink Entertainment

Let’s face it: Coronavirus fatigue has definitely set in by now. We’re all looking for new ways to pass the time amid a global pandemic, while still remaining safe and responsible. Apparently Netflix and chill just isn’t cutting it any more.

But now is not the time to throw caution to the wind and start going out to bars and restaurants, even if our elected leaders are failing us by encouraging us to do just that.

Instead, grab your quarantine buddies/partners/kids/familia and hit a local drive-in theatre that has instituted Covid-19 measures. From New York to LA and everywhere in between, there are hundreds of drive-in entertainment venues that have popped up amid the pandemic.

Drive-in movie theaters are making a comeback thanks to Coronavirus.

Credit: Marco Delgado / Getty Images

Fueled by the need to socially distance and the collective nostalgia for happier times, the comfort food of show business is providing a much-welcome way to consume live entertainment.

Outdoor drive-in theatres (among other forms of shows) have been popping up all over the U.S. – and world. In the era of Covid-19, many are clamoring for some form of entertainment and the drive-in theatre seems to be filling that need.

Local small business owners who have been forced to shut down operations to comply with Covid-19-related social distancing mandates have been reopening old drive-ins or building make-shift theaters in parking lots and showing old movies to customers to make up for lost income.

A giant drive-in theatre has popped up in the parking lot of a Queens, NY diner.

Credit: Jerome Strauss / Getty Images

New York’s Bel Aire Diner launched its drive-in theatre in May and it continues to sell out every night within minutes.

“The first time we put tickets up, which was for The Sandlot, tickets sold out in three minutes and there was over 500 attempts in those three minutes to buy tickets online,” Dellaportas told CNN Business on Friday.

Dellaportas said the Bel-Aire drive-in has become so popular, it’s allowed him to re-hire staff members he furloughed in March after government officials enacted shelter-in-place orders that decimated foot traffic at restaurants throughout New York City.

“Yesterday’s show sold out in under a minute, it was 815 spots,” he added.

In Miami, Carflix Cinemas sees shows sell out in minutes.

Credit: carflix_cinema / Instagram

Carflix Cinemas, which has its own 36 foot LED movie screen, partnered with an indoor amusement park to set up the massive drive-in theatre in the parking lot.

“As soon as the whole pandemic news started, we started trying to figure out what the future holds for us,” Bernal told CNN Business on Friday. “As we saw business declining, we started coming up with more ideas to generate revenue. This was one of the ideas presented by our staff, so we pursued it.”

The theatre is showing the original Jurassic Park and Sonic The Hedgehog to sold out crowds on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. The parking lot they use fits 175 cars and customers desperate to get out of the house are buying up $30 tickets within hours of going on sale.

Meanwhile, in Mexico City, tickets to the Coyote AutoCinema are being resold for double their original cost.

Credit: omgitsjustintime / Instagram

Mexico City has long been home to the AutoCinema Coyote – it’s a perfect date spot perfectly modeled after 1950s Americana kitsch. Like it legit serves up hamburgers, hotdogs, milkshakes and curly fries. But it too had to shutdown thanks to the Coronavirus pandemic.

However, it reopened on June 3rd with special social-distancing measures in place. If you leave your car for any reason, you must wear a mask and capacity is limited to just 30%.

Also in Mexico, an Acapulco hotel announced that it would soon be home to the country’s largest drive-in theatre – with capacity for 300 cars. They’ll be hosting nightly events and will also screen a local film festival in the coming weeks.

And it’s not just movies – drag shows are also going drive-in.

Credit: Dreamland Theatre Las Vegas

Fierce favorites from RuPaul’s Drag Race, including Yvie Oddly, Aquaria, Asia O’Hara, Acid Betty, Gigi Goode, Monet X’ Change, Kameron Michaels, Kim Chi, Naomi Smalls, Plastique, Vanessa Vanjie and Violet Chachki—will be performing an outdoor summer concert called “Drive ‘N Drag.”

In cities from New York and LA to Chicago and Seattle, RuPaul’s Drag Race is bringing socially-distanced drag to the masses.

Apart from RuPaul alum, several drag communities are hosting their own drive-in drag shows: there’s “Drive-In Drag Show And Dinner Theatre” across the West Coast and “Drag Drive-In” in Nashville.

Even if they’re popular right now, don’t plan on drive-in shows to stick around for too long.

Credit: transitdrivein / Instagram

Although the drive-in seems to have made a come back and it’s proving successful, many owners say they’re not turning much of a profit. Operating a drive-in is expensive: permits, movie licensing, staffing. Therefore, many operators say they don’t see drive-ins being a long-term viable option, mainly because the Hollywood studios don’t care for them.

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As The U.S. Expands Vaccine Eligibility Here’s What You Need To Know

Things That Matter

As The U.S. Expands Vaccine Eligibility Here’s What You Need To Know

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Starting today, everyone 16 and older can get in line for the Coronavirus vaccine. This is a huge milestone that has been months in the making after a very ambitious plan by the Biden administration.

But with the Johnson & Johnson vaccine still on pause, many have been wondering what the vaccine program will look like – especially since nearly everyone is now eligible to receive a shot in the arm.

As of Monday, anyone 16 and over is technically eligible to receive the Coronavirus vaccine.

On Monday, every state in the U.S. expanded its vaccine eligibility to include all adults over the age of 16, meeting President Biden’s deadline which he established two weeks ago.

The country is now administering 3.2 million doses a day on average, and half of all adults have now received at least one dose. Additionally, 84.3 million people have now been fully vaccinated against the disease. These are truly encouraging figures in the fight against the pandemic but a lot of uncertainty remains.

Ok but can I get a shot?

Technically, yes, anyone over the age of 16 is now eligible for the vaccine but your access to it really varies from state to state.

Hawaii, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington, D.C., were the last to open up eligibility on Monday, after other states expanded access to the general public over the past month.

If the country’s present vaccination rate continues, 70% of the total U.S. population could be vaccinated by June 17 and 90% by July 25, the New York Times has projected. That timeline will likely depend on what happens with Johnson & Johnson’s Covid-19 vaccine, however, as distribution is now paused following reports of blood clots, despite being statistically extremely rare.

So, what’s going on with the Johnson & Johnson vaccine?

On Sunday, the nation’s top infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony S. Fauci said that he believed the pause on the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine will likely be lifted on Friday. During interviews on talk shows, Fauci stated that he expected federal health officials to decide on the vaccine’s future by the end of the week and that he did not anticipate the vaccine being permanently banned.

One alternative to banning is to limit who is able to receive the one dose shot, perhaps limiting it to males over the age of 50. This is how Europe adjusted its strategy following similar blood clotting issues with the Astra Zeneca vaccine, which was created using similar methods.

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Met Gala 2021 Is Happening And Amanda Gorman Is Set To Host The America-Themed Fashion Event

Entertainment

Met Gala 2021 Is Happening And Amanda Gorman Is Set To Host The America-Themed Fashion Event

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It’s 2021 and the Met Gala is back this year – after being canceled in 2020 thanks to a pandemic – with superstar poet Amanda Gorman being eyed to host the fashion event of the year. Given the 23-year-old’s show-stopping performance at the inauguration, the theme fittingly will be a celebration of America and American designers.

The Met Gala will return in 2021 with a very special guest as host.

Vogue’s “Oscars of Fashion” famously takes place on the first Monday of May. However, this year it’s been pushed back to September 13, in hopes that life will have returned to something closer to normal by then.

Epic poet Amanda Gorman is reportedly in talks to co-host the event alongside Tom Ford, who is the academy’s president. The breakout star of President Biden’s inauguration, Gorman is on the cover of the magazine’s May issue and the subject of a relentlessly glowing profile inside.

The black-tie gala, which raises funds for Met’s Costume Institute, is normally fashion’s biggest night and sees guests from Lady Gaga, Jennifer Lopez and Cardi B to Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk and even Maluma.

The event was canceled in 2020 thanks to a global pandemic.

The world’s most glamorous party was canceled in 2020 because of COVID-19, which was (and still is) raging the planet at the time. There was a virtual event in place of the 2020 event, with celebs like Julia Roberts, Priyanka Chopra and Amanda Seyfried showing off their looks from home and stars like Mindy Kaling and Adam Rippon taking part in the #MetGalaChallenge, recreating looks from past years.

This year’s event will draw inspiration from all things USA.

The theme of this year’s Met Gala has not been announced, but Page Six says the night will be devoted to honoring America and American designers, following the 18-month-long COVID crisis in this country.

Recent past themes for the event have included “Camp: Notes on Fashion” (2019), “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination” (2018), and “Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garçons: Art of the In-Between (2017). And don’t forget 2016, when Zayn Malik wore robot-arms to Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology.

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