Cities feature free movies

Published 11:51 am Friday, June 26, 2009

With the steadily rising prices of seeing movies in theaters, Shelby County residents can find relief in free movie showings across the county.

Free movie events began in Homewood and Helena, eventually spreading to other communities within a few years, said Cris Nelson, president of the Helena Business and Professional Organization, which presents Helena’s Sundown Cinema.

“It’s a popular thing that many cities are trying to do to keep the family in the city to go out and do something together,” said Nelson, who has attended a similar free movie showing in Waikiki Beach, Hawaii.

In its seventh year, Sundown Cinema now includes games for children prior to the movie and a full concession stand. All the money they make goes to improve the park, often for new playground equipment.

“These events show that we care about our residents and want to go the extra step to provide something for them to do,” Nelson said. “It shows that we’re family-oriented and provides a sense of community for the city.”

In its third year, Chelsea’s Movies in the Park is a newer program presented by Eddleman Properties Inc. They have increased the number of showings each summer.

Eddleman sponsors the movies to bring people out into the community to where they can see the beauty of the neighborhood and homes, said Eddleman employee Frances Mayhall.

“Free family events are always great for the community because they bring people together in a fun atmosphere,” Mayhall said. “And what else can you do for free on a Friday night?”


Alabaster’s Movies in the Park are shown at Veterans Park located at 7305 Highway 119 in Alabaster. They are presented by Alabaster Parks and Recreation and begin around dusk, with activities and concessions prior to the start of the movie.

June 26 Get Smart

July 10 Big Fish

July 24 Madagascar 2

August 7 Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D


Chelsea’s Movies in the Park are shown in Chelsea Park’s Village Green at dusk, usually around 8 p.m. Information is available at

June 26 Madagascar 2

July 24 Marley & Me

August 14 Kung Fu Panda


Helena’s Sundown Cinema movies are shown on Fridays at 8 p.m. at the Helena Amphitheater. Concessions are available, including hamburgers, hot dogs, pizza, French fries and popcorn.

June 26 Happy Feet

July 3 Over the Hedge

July 10 Igor

July 17 Little Big League

July 24 Journey to the Center of the Earth

July 31 Madagascar 2

August 7 Indiana Jones: Kingdom of the Crystal Skull


Hoover’s Friday Night Flicks are shown at Veteran’s Park on Valleydale Road beginning at dusk. They are presented by the Hoover Parks and Recreation Department. 3D glasses will be provided when needed. If the weather is questionable, call (205) 739- RAIN after 5 p.m.

June 26 Journey to the Center of the Earth (in 3D)

July 10 Fly Me to the Moon (in 3D)

July 24 Chicken Run