2021 Outdoor Movies: FREE or Cheap Family Fun in Atlanta

Free outdoor movies during the summer months around Atlanta are one of our favorite ways to chill on the weekends. While this year may still be a bit different than years past, we’re hoping we can still participate in outdoor screenings.

We’ve tried to capture all the locations around Atlanta and their plans so far for 2021 – if we missed something, let us know.

2021 Outdoor Movies: FREE or Cheap Family Fun in Atlanta

Movies With Multiple Locations

Here are a few outdoor movie ideas that show their movies in different parts of the metro area.

“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. 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.

The schedule for 2021 has not been fully released yet. 

The Lake Lanier Outdoor Movie is a fun one to catch. Before the movie shows here, you can swim in the lake, build a sand castle or picnic with your family. Then lay back on a beach towel or beach chair and watch a movie on the big screen on the beach at War Hill Park.

Come out early (6pm) for fun & activities. Movie starts around sundown (8:45pm or earlier).

Other locations include Alpharetta, Canton, Cumming, Dawsonville – Beach of Lake Lanier, Dawsonville – Veteran’s Park, and Woodstock.

B at the Movies

B98.5’s free summer outdoor movie series has not yet been updated for 2021.  Typically it runs every Saturday at 13 metro Atlanta locations — including Suwanee, Dunwoody, and Roswell.

Outside the Perimeter

Here are some great outdoor movies to check out just outside the perimeter.

Flicks on the Bricks in Duluth

These FREE movies will be held on the first Fridays of the months of June, August, and September in 2021.

Flicks on the Bricks runs alongside Food Truck Friday.  Movies start at 8pm and the screen will be to the left of the Festival Center Stage. Expect to see characters from the movie or other themed entertainment there while you enjoy a great time on Duluth Town Green.

Black Panther will play on June 4, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone will be screened on August 6, and The Wizard of Oz will play on September 3.

Movies Under the Stars at Mall of Georgia

The Mall of Georgia didn’t host their Under the Stars movie nights in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and they haven’t yet released their plans for 2021.  We’ll keep an eye out and update this post when/if they plan to!

In past years, visitors have been able to grab their lawn chairs and blankets and join neighbors for a free concert and movie every Saturday night during the summer. Each event began at 6 pm with a live band performance, bounce houses, food and drink vendors and special retailer activities. BYOB is welcome (yeah!). Movies began at dusk at The Village Amphitheatre. 

Movies by Moonlight at City Springs

In its past 15 years of existence, Movies by Moonlight in Sandy Springs has combined the nostalgia of a drive-in movie with the fun of a block party rolled into one!

No details have yet been released about their plans for 2021.

Movies at Swift Cantrell Park in Kennesaw

The 2021 Kennesaw Outdoor Movie Series continues with more family friendly flicks at Swift-Cantrell Park (in May and July) and Depot Park (in June) in 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.  The animated feature will be projected onto a giant inflatable screen after sundown. Bring your blanket or lawn chair and a picnic (no alcohol or glass containers) and relax “on the green” for an outdoor movie night the whole family will enjoy.

The 2021 schedule is:

  • Wonder Woman 1984 (PG-13) on Saturday, May 1, 2021 at Swift-Cantrell Park
  • School of Rock (PG-13) on Saturday, June 5, 2021 at Depot Park
  • Trolls World Tour (PG) on Saturday, July 24, 2021 at Swift-Cantrell Park

For the May and July movies, parking is available inside the park and at neighboring Kennesaw Elementary School.  Large 10’x10’ family squares will be painted on the field to ensure social distancing.

For 2021 they are also offering VIP seating and Party Tents at the movies for an extra cost.  Click here for more details.

City of McDonough Movies on the Square

The City of McDonough has not updated its schedule for 2021 as of yet.  We’ll check back!

Movies on the Lawn in Lawrenceville

Lawrenceville will be hosting several Feature Friday events this summer at the Lawrenceville Lawn.  To ensure safety, attendance will be limited. No registration is required for this event.

Bring the family and join them to watch the movie Ferdinand on May 7, 2021!

Hidden Figures will be screened on June 18, 2021.

Food trucks will be onsite with convenient treats for sale. Movie to begin at 7:00 PM.

Mable House Barnes Amphitheatre

Currently the Mable House has not announced dates for the 2021 movie series as of yet. 

Inside the Perimeter

You don’t have to go far — these summer movies are found inside the perimeter.

Summer Movies Nights at Vinings Jubilee

Vinings Jubilee announced their first ever Summer Movie Night in 2020, but they have not yet announced anything for 2021.  We’ll check back!

Screen on the Green at Atlantic Station

My family LOVES Atlantic Station and we are ecstatic to learn that there are movies at sundown on various dates.  Make outdoor movie viewing a new tradition this summer at Atlantic Station’s Screen on the Green. Twice a month, they’ll feature a different family-friendly film on their large outdoor screen.

Their 2021 movie selections will be announced soon.

Schedule:*

  • May 6
  • May 20
  • June 10
  • June 24
  • July 8
  • August 12
  • August 26

*Check back for movie selections. Movie trivia will begin at 6:30pm with movies beginning at 7pm. End times will vary.

Movies on the Town, Brookhaven

Currently, Town Brookhaven hasn’t released info about their 2021 Movies on the Town schedule.

In the past, 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. In the past, movies have gone through June through 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. The line-up is a blend of animated and non-animated movies perfect for families, date nights, girls’ nights, groups of friends and more!

Flick-Nic, Candler Park

There have been no updates for this event yet in 2021.

Usually 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. 

Outdoor Movies Around Georgia

You’ll find some great outdoor movies all around our awesome state — here are some of our favorites.

Movie Under the Stars in Dahlonega

Dahlonega has not added any dates for this event in 2021 yet. Typically they invite 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. 

Dauset Nature Center

Dauset Trails is a nature center in Jackson, Ga. They have not released any summer movie dates for 2021 yet.

Movies on the Beach at Callaway Gardens

Callaway Gardens has not yet released any information about their movies on the beach series for 2021.

Most years, guests are able to celebrate Fridays 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

Jekyll Island’s Movies on the Green is a super fun event, although no dates have yet been released for 2021.

Bring your own chairs and blankets to this free event….dinner and snack options available for purchase nearby.

Dive-In Movies

These movies come with a splash of water!

Summer Waves Dive-In Movies

Summer Waves Water Park hosts movie nights in the summertime.  No dates have yet been released for 2021.

In the past, visitors were able to grab an inner tube and watch their favorite water-themed movies from the Summer Waves wave pool. Movies started at 8:30 pm and were free with a Night Splash ticket. 

White Water Dive-In Movies

Six Flags White Water has not yet announced their summer movie schedule for 2021.  We’ll keep checking back.

In the past, you could see a movie while lounging on an inner tube at White Water’s 750,000 gallon wave pool – The Atlanta Ocean. Movies were every Thursday night in June and July. Movies started just after 7 pm. The movies are free with your White Water admission.

Cheap Summer Movies

Although not free, these are super cheap!

Summer Movie Express at Regal Cinemas

Regal Cinemas has not yet released information about 2021’s Summer Movie Express plans — but we’ll keep checking!  My kids absolutely love these fun movie days.

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. This movie series usually takes place from June-August.

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 good times 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. 

#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 fine 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.

#5. Bring bug spray- Please don’t forget this one because your family will be miserable. I’m not a 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?