2018 Outdoor Movies: FREE or Cheap Family Fun in Atlanta

To say that my family enjoys movies is an understatement. The only better thing to experience with a movie is a free movie during the summer months around Atlanta. I knew there were a lot of free or cheap outdoor summer movies, but this is the ultimate list. I think it’s safe to say that your family will be able to see as many summer movies as your heart desires.outdoor movies

With Multiple Locations

Movies in the Park in the North Atlanta Metro

This summer don’t just watch a movie outdoors, experience it in a historic or unusual location. Northside Hospital’s Movies in the Park™ has been awarded Atlanta’s Top 10 Outdoor Movie Events. Movie start times are kid-friendly and begin at sundown NOT dark. Don’t forget to bring a lawn chair, blanket, and bug spray.

Movies in the park is sponsored by Northside Hospital and Southern Outdoor Cinema. Showings begin May 26 with 2018 movies including The Last Jedi, Coco, Paddington 2 and more.


B at the Movies

B98.5’s free summer outdoor movie series runs every Saturday, and you can come to any of the 13 Metro Atlanta locations. 2018 schedule to be announced soon.



KISS 104.1 has announced the 2017 KISS @ THE MOVIES schedule. The free monthly event starts in June. 2018 schedule TBD.


Outside the Perimeter

Flicks on the Bricks in Duluth

These FREE movies begin in June and run through September. Keep in mind that the movies begin at dusk and the screen is located at the fountain. 2018 movies include Jumanji, Coco, Peter Rabbit and Black Panther.


Movies Under the Stars at Mall of Georgia

Live near the Mall of Georgia? Grab your lawn chairs and blankets and join neighbors for a free concert and movie every Saturday night. Each event begins at 6:30 pm with a live band performance, bounce houses, food and drink vendors and special retailer activities. Movies begin at dusk at The Village Amphitheatre. 2018 schedule TBA.


Avenue Peachtree City Shopping Center

Celebrate Movie Mondays at the Avenue in Peachtree City. The fun begins at 6 pm and the movie begins at sundown. Enjoy a bounce house, face painting, popcorn and giveaways.2018 schedule TBA.


Movies at Swift Cantrell Park, Kennesaw

The inflatable screen lights up at dark, so arrive early (around 6 pm) for games, activities, fun, and more. Admission is free, but concessions and some activities have an extra charge. All movies are rated PG, and titles are subject to change. Parking is available inside the park and at neighboring Kennesaw Elementary School.


City of McDonough Movies on the Square

The City of McDonough hosts movies on the Square at sundown each month. Movies begin May 5 and include Coco, Beauty and the Beast, and more.


Movies on the Lawn, Lawrenceville

Meet on the Lawrenceville Lawn for FREE movies beginning May 11. Three dates have been announced that include views of Sandlot, Paddington 2 and Twister.


Mable House Barnes Amphitheatre

A FREE summer movies series will kick off in June. Gates open at 7:30 p.m. and the movies will start at dusk, rain or shine. 2018 schedule TBA.


Main Street Movies, Stockbridge

Movies are shown on the lawn next to the Stockbridge City Hall. The movies begin at dusk. The evening includes family fun, games and prizes. 2018 schedule TBA.


Inside the Perimeter

Movies in Central Park, Atlantic Station

My family LOVES Central Park and we are ecstatic to learn that there are movies at sundown on various dates at Central Park in Atlanta, beginning May 17. The film begins promptly at dusk, but get to Central Park a little early to get a good seat. Blankets and chairs are allowed.

Want to sit like a VIP? Follow each movie’s Facebook Event page. In the past, Atlantic Station has offered special, day-of giveaways. The 2018 schedule includes Meet The Parents, Charlie and the Chocolate Family, Happy Feet and more.


Movies on The Town, Brookhaven

Another great option when it comes to seeing FREE movies in Atlanta is at Town Brookhaven. The area is designed to have chairs and blankets. You aren’t allowed to bring in food and drinks, but there are TONS of awesome menu options from local restaurants to choose from. Movies go through June almost the end of July.

If you live close to Town Brookhaven, they always have good shows. I have neighbors who have complimented the atmosphere and everything about Movies on the Town. This is definitely a must experience this summer if you’re in town. The line-up is a blend of animated and non-animated movies perfect for families, date nights, girls’ nights, groups of friends and more!


Flicks at Tech

Georgia Tech’s favorite summer film series Dodd After Dark, is back in 2018 as Flicks at Tech! The Georgia Tech Student Center and Georgia Tech Athletics have partnered to host the series, which includes three films in various locations across campus. 2018 schedule TBA.


Flick-Nic, Candler Park

This one is kind of neat because the movies start in April but extend into August and September. This is nice because most of the other movie options end in July. Picnic festivities and music start an hour before dark in front of the pool house. 2018 schedule TBA.


Outdoor Movies Around Georgia

Movie Under the Stars in Dahlonega

Dahlonega invites families the second Friday of every month from May through August to enjoy their Movies Under The Stars series, Friday evenings in Hancock Park in Historic Downtown Dahlonega.

Movie start times vary slightly depending on the degree of darkness – a catch-all phrase is that movies start at dusk. 2018 schedule TBA.


Dauset Nature Center

Dauset Trails is a nature center in Jackson, Ga. They are hosting an outdoor movie night in October. The movie is TBD.


Movies on the Beach at Callaway Gardens

Celebrate Friday with a movie on Robin Lake Beach at Callaway Gardens. Admission is included with paid gate admission and overnight stays.  If you don’t want to come for the day, after 5 pm, admission is $10 per adult; $5 per child (ages 6 to 12); children five and younger are admitted for free. Bring a chair or blanket to enjoy the show.


Jekyll Island Movie on the Green

If you are visiting Jekyll Island, you can enjoy movies on their new town Green. This summer movies include Rogue One, LEGO Batman, Wonder Woman, and Frozen.

The movies will continue in the fall with Finding Dory, Coco, and The Polar Express.


Dive-In Movies

Summer Waves Dive-In Movies

Grab an inner tube and watch your favorite water-themed movies from the Summer Waves wave pool. Movies start at 8:30 pm and are free with a Night Splash ticket. The movie on July 1 is Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest.


White Water Dive-In Movies

See a movie while lounging on an inner tube at White Water’s 750,000 gallon wave pool – The Atlanta Ocean. Movies are every Thursday night in June and July. Movies start just after 7 pm. The movies are free with your White Water pass.

Movies include: Pete’s Dragon, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, The BFG, Alice Through the Looking Glass, Finding Dory, Zootopia and Moana.


Cheap Summer Movies

Summer Movie Express

Admission to the Summer Movie Express is only $1. Tickets available for purchase at the box office and all movies start at 10:00 am. Each week two movies play on each day. A portion of the proceeds goes to the Will Rogers Institute.

Find more free and cheap movies here!


Tips for Having a Successful Summer Movie Night with the Family

Movie night is right around the corner for your family this summer, which means lots of fun is in store for everyone. While you may have lots of fun planned, there are ways to have an even more successful summer movie night with your family this year. Check out these tips!

#1. Plan which movies to see- There are TONS of movie options around the Atlanta area. It’s best if you choose a couple of movies that you want to see, instead of trying to see them all. I like to make a list of our top choices and from there we vote on the best options for our family. Making a plan can always help your family have a better time. In the past, when we’ve planned our experiences have been way better than being sporadic.

#2. Invite friends and family- What better way to spend time with friends and family this year than with a summer movie? Summer movies are not only a frugal activity but an awesome one. Every week, we try to invite at least one friend or family member to come with us. Every time we have brought a family member with us, they have LOVED it! The kids also get a kick out of inviting different people with them as well. We always have a vehicle full, which makes for an, even more, fun summer. The more the merrier, am I right?

#3. Bring your own snacks- Another thing my family does to make movie night super successful is bringing our own snacks. Buying food anywhere can really add up, which is find on occasion, but since we plan on doing this event every week, bringing our own snacks is a must. Keep an eye out though because some of the movie venues do not allow you to bring your own snacks.

#4. Bring something comfortable to sit on- Sitting on the ground is not comfortable at all. You don’t want to be miserable at a park movie. Have the kids bring pillows and blankets to sit on. Maybe they can even bring their favorite stuffed animal to help them feel even more comfortable. Just don’t forget it or you could be in for a miserable night.

#5. Bring bug spray- Please don’t forget this one because your family will be miserable. I’m not a huge fan of mosquitos and bites make me cringe. I make sure that my entire family is wearing some sort of bug spray.

#6. Have the kids rest prior to coming- Most of the time, movies end pretty late into the evening. In the past summers, I have had my kids take a nap or rest for a while before coming. Since kids can get tired really easy, if not in bed at their normal time, it’s important that they get the rest they need. Not to mention, rested kids always equal happier kids.

Having a successful free or cheap outdoor summer movie night around Atlanta can be fun! Follow this advice and your family should be good to go the entire night. What tips would you add to this list?


Lesli Peterson

Lesli made her way to Atlanta over 20 years ago, after living in Germany, Japan and six U.S. states. She relishes the discovery of obscure, offbeat and unwonted places, and she will chat up any willing stranger to uncover a new secret locale.

After 18 years in software development, Lesli bailed on the corporate scene. When she’s not traveling, she’s hiking in the mountains or checking out Atlanta’s culinary scene, whiskey in hand.

Lesli has two kiddos -Cooper and Elliot- plus two bonus kids currently at UGA, and she’s happily married to her soul mate.

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