Blairstown is dialing up the thrills in its “Friday the 13th” celebration this week, with a visit from the original “Jason” actor plus a costume contest, drink specials, a “Slash and Shop”, and screenings of the classic horror movie.
Whenever the infamous date of Friday the 13th rolls around, Warren County marks a chilling chapter in its history - the infamous murders at Camp Crystal Lake, when a group of teenagers were slain, one by one, while attempting to re-open the abandoned campground.
Actually, the camp is fictional and those murders never happened. But "Friday the 13th" - the 1980 American slasher film directed by Sean S. Cunningham and written by Victor Miller that led to a number of sequels and a crossover movie - was shot in and around the peaceful, rural towns of northern Warren County, and many of the exterior settings can still be seen, looking remarkably unchanged from when they were depicted in the film. Visitors are invited to check out some of those locations, see the movie, and participate in other special events on this April's Friday the 13th.
Here are the highlights:
Roy’s Hall is screening the original “Friday the 13th” at 6:15 p.m. and 9 p.m. showings of the film at Roy's Hall in Blairstown. Located at 30 Main Street, Roy’s Hall had a cameo in the original movie: Although it now sports a brilliant blue paint job, the theater’s distinctive architectural style makes it easy to spot in an early scene as one of the characters strolls by. Audiences go wild whenever the prominent local landmarks appear on screen. Click here to order tickets online.
The Blairstown Museum at 26 Main Street is open from 9 a.m. to 11:45 p.m. on Friday, where you can enjoy exhibits which include autographed memorabilia, Tom Savini's "Jason" reproduction, and the original diner letters. There will be a Friday the 13th Costume Contest from 12 to 4 p.m. and the winner will be announced at 5 p.m. The adult winner (18+) gets a $25 gift certificate to a local restaurant and the best costume child winner (17 and younger) gets a $25 gift certificate to 4 Track Bike - Hike - Hobby of Blairstown.
Ari Lehman, who portrayed the original Jason Voorhees in the movie, will be at the museum from 3 p.m. to 10 p.m. for a ticketed meet and greet.
And from 12 to 5 p.m., you can get your Horror Face! Zella Bella's Gaggle of Giggles will take a dark turn to provide Friday the 13th inspired machete wounds and face painting from artist Beth Sager, who will be located on the museum porch. The wounds are made from Elmer's Glue, as to avoid latex allergies. Face paintings are $3, $5 and $10. Machete wounds are $10. The museum’s Friday the 13th Souvenir Shop items include books, jewelry, shirts, soaps, playing cards, posters, toys, and much more.
Last October’s Friday the 13th featured an actual Friday the 13th themed wedding. This time, there will be two vow renewal ceremonies held in the park at Blair Falls, at the northern end of Main Street, the first couple at 2:30 p.m. and the second pair at 4:13 p.m. A hockey mask-wearing Jason will escort the couples. Both ceremonies are open to the public.
“Slash and Shop” at The Carriage House, 27 Main Street, from 2 to 9 p.m. with local vendors.
The White Raven, A Unique Boutique, 17 Main Street, will have Friday the 13th items on sale.
Barber on Main, 17 Main Street, is giving $2 off to anyone who walks in and mentions the Blairstown Museum.
Sam Rose Salon, 55 Route 94, is giving a free wash, cut and style to anyone donating 8" or more of hair on Friday the 13th to a wigs for children with cancer foundation.
All these activities are likely to make you hungry and thirsty. The Blairstown Diner, at 53 Route 94, which appears in the movie, will be open. And the Blairstown Inn, Post Time Pub and Gourmet Gallery will all have movie themed foods and drinks.
Buck Hill Brewery and Restaurant, 45 Route 94, is celebrating Friday the 13th with the release of three new brews: “Slasher Stout”, a dry, Irish stout infused with tart cherry; “Camp Crystal Lake Water”, an American style wheat beer, brewed with spring wheat and barley (try it with a slice of citrus); and “Camp No-Be-Mango”, another American style wheat beer, infused with mango. The movie’s “Camp Crystal Lake” was actually Boy Scout Camp NoBeBoSco in neighboring Hardwick Township.
Please note that the camp is still operated by the Boy Scouts of America and is not open to the public. Guided tours for this Friday the 13th were offered but sold out within minutes. A special "Friday the 13th: Hiking, History & Horror" 3-mile hike also is sold out.
If you want to spend the day scouting the movie locations, here are a few of the spots you'll see on screen in Blairstown:
• Blair Lake and the falls
• bridge on Main Street
• Main Street
• Old Mill, archway
• Blairstown Theater (now Roy’s Hall)
• Blairstown Diner (exterior and interior). The rain falling in this scene was reportedly created by a local fire department truck.
• Store that the character Annie enters to ask for directions to the camp (next to what is now Nature’s Harvest)
The interior shot of this store is actually in the Village of Hope. Hartung’s was a small shop with a lunch counter, and is now the location of Hope Junction Antiques, which also is open and welcomes visitors.
In Hope Township, in addition to the scene shot at Hartung's, you can find:
• the Moravian Cemetery
• the intersection of Routes 519 and 521
And be sure to keep your eyes open on Friday - you never know where the real life Jason is lurking!