Classic Movie Night — a magical time for all ages

Classic Movie Night — a magical time for all agesBy CHRISTINA MACGREGOR, News Review Correspondent

I have attended many events at the Historic USO Building over the years. I have watched friends perform in Open Mic Night and have been amazed at the amount of talent that there is in Ridgecrest. I watched ukulele solos, group numbers, ballads and so many amazing numbers.

My husband also used to be a member of Big Band X-Press, and I was able to attend a dance at the Historic USO while he was playing in the band. That evening felt very reminiscent of those ’50s movies where the heroine has her eye on the cute boy in the band, and he jumps off stage and makes his way over to dance with her. They stare into each other’s eyes as they dance the night away, and then … OK, I realize that I am starting to make my evening sound like a romantic comedy. It was a magical night, though, and every couple in Ridgecrest should attend at least one of the dances.

Despite loving every experience at the Historic USO, I had one experience yet check off my list until this past week. The Classic Movie Night has been on my “list of fun summer events” for a while now, and so I am grateful that I finally had the opportunity to make it to one.

Every Wednesday through Aug. 7, family-friendly movies — old and new — are screened at 7 p.m. The snack bar opens at 6:30 p.m., serving a variety of tasty snack foods at affordable prices.

I figured that I couldn’t go wrong with such a lovely event. I brought my 7-year-old daughter, Ariadne, with me since the movie that night featured a girl who finds out that she is a princess. The main character has to go through a lot of self-discovery to figure out if she even wants to take on that role and figure out who she wants to be.

I figured the movie had a great message that my oldest daughter could appreciate. Well, my other children would have appreciated the message as well, but they don’t sit very well during live-action movies. I wanted to be able to enjoy the movie, too, so a mommy-daughter date it was!

After getting mini pizza, Oreo cookies, a bag of chips and two bottles of IWV soda (all for only $7), we found a table and chairs inside the venue to sit at. Viewers saw previews for upcoming summer titles while volunteers passed out free ice cream to all the kids in the audience, and adults were given a bag of popcorn — which I thought was incredibly nice.

After previews Host Nick Rogers acknowledged Classic Movie Night sponsors and talked more about upcoming attractions. Then, we were off to the main event.

One of the great things about watching classic movies is that they can bring back fun memories. I remember originally watching the movie when I was in high school. The music brought back memories, as did different themes of the movie. I was an awkward high schooler — I had braces, frizzy hair and acne and was very geeky. I related to the main character because (aside from the setting, and learning she was a princess) I had a very similar high school experience. I gained confidence the older I got, and it was fun to see the girl in the movie come into her own personality and love herself for who she was.

I do have a few recommendations:

I personally thought the temperature in the building was perfect, but Ariadne wanted to use a blanket or coat because she was slightly chilly (and in the Ridgecrest summers, that is not a bad problem to have).

Also maybe take your children to use the restroom before the event starts. I felt a little bit guilty that we had to leave the room twice to use the bathroom. The other people attending the movie were kind about it, but I figure I would just pass this mom courtesy on as something that I should have done.

As the movie ended, Ariadne kept thanking me for taking her out for such a fun time. The whole evening was a reminder to me of the many wonderful events that our family has been lucky to attend in Ridgecrest. Our children are truly blessed because of the wonderful individuals in our community who help put on events like these.

Admission to Classic Movie Night is free, but donations are lovingly accepted. If you have questions about the titles of the movies or other info, you can call 760-375-8456.

Pictured: The MacGregor ladies take an “ussie” in front of the Historic USO?Building.

Story First Published: 2019-06-28