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Update: 7/7/09

Yesterday, Monday July 6, Judge Zaleski ruled in our favor and granted the Preliminary Restraining Order that we had requested. What this means to all of you, our very patient and loyal customers is that you will now be able to enjoy all of your movies all night long, without the glare of the lights from the Ohio Sports Park! We understand that Ohio Sports Park is already taking steps to put shields on their lights and then they too will be able to enjoy their business without harming the Aut-O-Rama Drive-In. Thank You, everyone for your help, support and patience while we fought to keep our drive-in safe.

Update: 6/12/09

We had the hearing for our preliminary injunction. The Judge will not rule on our case for about a week. Our hearing took all day Wednesday June 10, and all morning on Thursday, June 11. We are indebted to all of our customers who took time out of their lives to come to the courthouse and testify. Unfortunately, with the hearing taking so long, the Judge would only allow testimony from 3 people. Their testimony was important because it put a face on the “customers” of Aut-O-Rama Drive-In. We feel that we presented a strong case against the sports park and are very hopeful that the judge will rule in our favor. In the meantime, we have the restraining order in place that compels the sports park to turn off lights on the 4 fields that affect the drive-in the most. Our thanks to everyone for their patience and support.

Many THANKS go out to ABC Equipment Rental and Sales!

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Original Message: 6/4/09

Dear Patrons and Friends of the Aut-O-Rama Drive-In,

Our thanks to all of those patrons who took part in our survey over the Memorial Day weekend and continue to be patient with our less than acceptable movie presentation. We are still working with our attorneys to get to a permanent solution to our lighting problem from the nearby sports park. Many of you have seen the attention our situation is getting from the media. If you haven’t been to the drive-in this past month you may not have realized something was going on. At this point, it doesn’t look like our light pollution problem will be solved without going to court.

After dealing with this problem since May 8, 2009, we did obtain a temporary restraining order on Thursday, May 28, 2009. The Temporary Restraining Order forbid the sports park from turning any of their 8 baseball/softball field lights on after 9:25pm. Finally after three weeks of trying to get a resolution to the light spillage, we got a phone call from the lawyer for the sports park on Friday, May 29, after we served them with the restraining order, asking if we could meet and discuss this with them. We have no desire to harm the sports park, so we agreed to meet. As a result of that meeting, we agreed to do an experiment on Friday night, in an effort to let them use any fields that might not be contributing to the glare problem at the drive-in. As a result of this test, which lasted almost the entire first movie, we came to an agreement that the sports park would have the use of all eight fields until 9:25 but only 4 of their 8 ball fields after that time. We again went to court on Tuesday, June 2, because the sports park wanted to amend the Temporary Restraining Order. Since it is staying light out a little later, again we compromised and moved the time that all the fields could be lit, from 9:25pm until 10:00pm and allowing the continued use of the other 4 fields after that time. There is still a problem with those other fields, but we are doing all we can to help the sports park keep playing their games.

The next step is a preliminary hearing on Wednesday morning, June 10. The hearing is likely to take all morning long. Over the Memorial Day weekend, we obtained a long list of people who said they would be willing to testify in court. Beginning probably tonight, Thursday, June 4, 2009, my daughter-in-law Niki and I will start calling the people on this list to see if they are still willing and able to be at the Lorain County Court building in Elyria, Ohio beginning at 8:30am on Wednesday, June 10, 2009. I know this is a lot to ask of our very loyal customers, but we need the assistance of as many people as possible. You can also contact me to confirm or decline your participation, by answering this email.

We are working to get a permanent solution to this problem as quickly as possible, and again, we appreciate your co-operation, help and understanding.

Best Regards, and our thanks,

Deb Sherman and Family
Aut-O-Rama Drive-In