It’s been about 10 months, but the silver screen will be returning to Henry Miller Plaza tonight.
Event organizer Ann McCauley said “Despicable Me 2,” will be shown about 9 p.m. as part of Movie in the Park at the plaza on Sixth and H streets. In the sequel, lovable villain Gru swaps his villainous world domination schemes for princess parties, and the yellow, spikey-haired “Minions” rustle up trouble.
“People should get there around 7:30. There’s not a bad seat in the house. But if they come early, they’ll get their favorite seat in the house,” McCauley said.
Movie-goers should bring lawn chairs, blankets and, if they choose, snacks. The event is free.
Vendors will offer popcorn, churros and water for sale. Sponsor Pacific Gas & Electric will have an informational booth.
The event will be staffed by the Merced County and Los Banos parks and recreation departments.
McCauley, who has been organizing Movie in the Park for five years said that the event usually costs $5,000 and likely would not happen without sponsors. Crowds vary from year to year, from between 150 and 500 people.
“It’s free entertainment,” McCauley said. “It’s a fun night for people with little kids to everybody that’s senior. Everybody enjoys the crowd, and you strike up a conversation with whoever you’re sitting next to.”
McCauley said she tries to have two movie nights per year. She said the only bad thing about the last one in September was some of the children became rambunctious as they played on and around the statues of Henry Miller and his cattle. McCauley implores parents to watch their children so they do not hurt themselves.
Tonight’s movie will mark the first time the event has included a sequel to a film it has shown previously. In 2011, “Despicable Me” was shown in the plaza.
McCauley said she enjoys organizing the event because of the joy it gives families.
“I still meet people who’ve never been to one and when they hear about it they say, ‘Oh, this is so much fun. When are you going to do another one?’ ” McCauley said.