NY movie fans flock to Franklin County field for feature presentation

GABRIELS, N.Y. (WCAX) After nearly three months of enduring the pandemic in their homes, many northern New York residents are itching to get out. Thursday night a group of local residents flocked to a Franklin County field to be transported "Back to the Future."

Tucker Farms in Gabriels is known for it's potatoes. "Fifth generation with, my brother Steve, growing seed potatoes. We ship those all over the United States," said the farm's Tom Tucker.

But this year, with the farm's fields fallow during the pandemic, an idea began to sprout. "People seem to be so ready for any kinds of outdoor activity," said Eric Wilson with Good Guy Productions.

Folks from all around the region lined up in their cars as far as the eye could see waiting to get their tickets, find a spot in the ten-acre field, tune in to the feature presentation.

"It's kinda weird to see this many people. It's probably the biggest thing to ever come to Gabriels," Tucker said.

The farm filled with over 500 cars to watch the classic movie on two 20 by 24-foot screens. A strict set of rules maintained social distance, along with no sitting in truck beds and no convertible tops down.

"I think it's a really cool idea to bring people together without having everyone be together," said Sarah Samperi, an audience member.

"That's just the way it is right now," said Wilson.

Some folks made sure they have the best experience possible, with a bug net and a squeaky clean windshield.

Tickets were by donation only, bringing in about $1,000 to help the Paul Smiths-Gabriels Fire Department.

Tucker, who also serves at fire chief, says the department lost out on one of their biggest fundraisers of the year because of COVID-19. "This, to me, will be able to pick up some of the lost proceeds from that. It will be huge," he said.

"They are a wonderful fire department and they always give back to the community and protect," said Traci Hathaway, an audience member.

A chance to get moviegoers' minds off of the present. "Take it back to something that was great. It's a good, feel-good movie. This is a good, feel-good event, and we're going to move on to the future, we're going to get through this whole catastrophe that's happening to us," Wilson said.