Popular ‘Movies-in-the-Park’ series ready for 2011 season

For 30-plus years, Kyrene Corridor families have spent spring and fall evenings watching movies and spending quality time together at Kiwanis Park. In May, Tempe’s Movies in the Park series will continue as the sun sets every Friday.

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The free series brings residents together evenings for genuine family time accompanied by a PG or G-rated movie.

“This is really providing another element of enjoying the community,” said Denise Rentschler, city of Tempe community outreach manager. “It’s a free event that brings families together.”

With funding from Tempe Diablos, Movies in the Park has been an ongoing success for more than three decades, Rentschler said.

“With the economy, parents have consistently been so thankful to have the opportunity to spend quality time with their children without having to spend an enormous amount of money.”

Kids attending the event throughout May will also be able to enter a coloring contest, the first edition of which is on Page 8 of this issue of Wrangler News. Entries are due by June 3. Winners selected in June will receive a prize donated by one of the event’s sponsors.

Rentschler said free sports clinics, provided by Tempe Youth Sports, are also frequently held before the movie screening.

“All of the kids have a great time,” she said. “It gets them outside and they get to watch movies that are just out of the theaters.”

Before the presentation, residents can enter a raffle to sit with friends in the VIP couch section, provided by Tempe’s IKEA. Snacks and beverages are also available for purchase during the movie.

“We always have at least 500 people come out for the movie nights,” Rentschler said. “Residents who just happen to walk by (often) end up staying; they’re shocked that it’s a free event.”

The first showing, on Friday, May 6, will be Toy Story 3, displayed on one of Arizona’s largest inflatable screens, Rentschler said. Other movies scheduled for May are Aladdin, Despicable Me and Shrek: Forever After.

“It’s always very well received,” she said. “We get at least 500 residents coming out to watch the movie.”

Movies in the Park will end the last Friday of May, but will resume in September. For more information, visit www.tempe.gov/events/movies .



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