On this day back in 1980 the horror classic, Friday the 13th was released to eager audiences. The film follows a group of freshly minted, teenaged, camp counselors as they attempt to re-open a long abandoned and neglected summer camp. Unfortunately throughout this process, the teens are quietly stalked and murdered one by one. You know the drill…
If you’ve seen the film you are probably aware of the tragic storied history of Camp Crystal Lake. It all started back in 1953 when a boy by the name of Jason, who was often bullied, drowned in the namesake lake. The following year, two camp counselors were murdered. Thus began what eventually became a twelve film franchise that also comprised a TV series, comic books, novels, merchandise, etc. The list goes on and on.
So while many know the story of Jason Voorhees and Camp Crystal Lake, some don’t know that Friday the 13th was filmed entirely on location at Camp No-Be-Bo-Sco. The camp, which belongs to the Boy Scouts of America was opened back in 1927. It is located in Hardwick, New Jersey and fully functions as a Boy Scout camp to this very day.
Once a year the organization allows die hard fans of Friday the 13th inside the gates to do a Camp Crystal Lake immersive experience and tour the location. The first-ever camp tour happened on May 13th, 2011 – yes, that was a Friday – when a few lucky fans were able to see all the film sites where Jason enacted his revenge. The mile long guided tour, takes fans to various filming locations in the camp that were made famous by the film.
Today the demand is so high, the tour is offered only by lottery. You see, one must win a chance to purchase tickets to a future tour via the Camp Crystal Lake Tours webpage. Keep in mind the tours act as fundraising events for the non-profit Scout Council and help in preserving the historic structures within the camp, as well as camping programs for future generations.
I just checked out the site this morning and it appears the lottery is up and running. I guess in the end, Jason Voorhees never cared much for social distancing.