The Sunset Drive-in Theater opened in 1947, near the start of the postwar era in which such auto-centric enterprises flourished nationally – making it the oldest operational drive-in theater in West Virginia. It has been owned by the Ellis family since 1955, along with the adjacent Sunset Ellis Restaurant, which shares its roadside marquee. (Prior to that time, the Ellises had owned another combination drive-in theater and restaurant operation, the Ellis Drive-in, in nearby Bridgeport; it no longer exists.)
The Sunset offers space for 400 cars, with the audience watching double bills of first-run films on the theater’s single screen (which incorporates an apartment into its massive screen tower). Recent upgrades to the nostalgic experience include FM stereo sound and digital projection. The drive-in’s open season typically runs from April to September, with screenings Friday through Sunday nights. In season, the property also hosts a flea market during the daytime on Saturdays.