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Halloween in the Land of the Walking Dead

So for Halloween looking for something different to do?  Why not tour the Land of the Walking Dead?  Its only a short drive from Atlanta and full of creepy sights.
Its not always so easy to find the filming locations you remember from the show, however.  Check out all my Walking Dead galleries to learn about the most easily accessed sights in the Atlanta area (links below).
 So you want to tour the land of THE WALKING DEAD and see idyllic sites like this one (site of film SWEET HOME ALABAMA)?  No problem.  Just click on to one of the many websites that provide shooting location addresses, get in the car, and go. . .


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After a long drive from Atlanta or Birmingham or Macon you might eventually find Chestlehurst Road home of both Herschel's Farm and the prison that has served as the backdrop of the past two seasons of THE WALKING DEAD.   If you find it, it will because of extraordinary luck.  Your navigation system will be no help and there are no street signs.  Hint:   It is the first street east of the intersection of Wells and Route 74/85 just to the east of downtown Senoia.  

You'll remember that after being run out of the abandoned house by zombies, Rick and Daryl discover a prison full of zombies. The group decides to clear the prison of zombies in order to occupy the seemingly safe structure.
 What you might not know is that Raleigh Studios bought the farm, the "prison" the road. . .everything. . .and it is now completely off limits to sightseers.  There are multiple warning signs, gates and other scary enough looking deterrents to send most tourists fleeing.  The google earth images of the "prison" reveal that it is a Hollywood backdrop.
 If the wicked "no trespassing" signs weren't enough the studio has draped most of the "prison" fence in black plastic so that prying eyes may not see what's going on inside the Raleigh Studios compound (below).
 Below:  A recent rainy afternoon revealed this scene of the prison's main gate.  Herschel's farm is behind guard shacks and completely inaccessible.
 What you can see, a couple of blocks away in picturesque downtown Senoia, Georgia (aka Woodbury), is a walk of fame with the names of productions completed in and around the town including 2011's FOOTLOOSEDROP DEAD DIVA, and THE WALKING DEAD.
 There is a slightly warmer welcome at the site of the mill dam where THE WALKING DEAD group fled at the end of Season 2 and camped overnight (between seasons).
 While the area is POSTED it is also polite, offering tourists who manage to find it a way to get inside without trespassing.
In the season two finale, after Rick's vehicle runs out of gas, he and the other survivors from Hershel's farm spend the night surrounded by some stone structures near a waterfall.  To locals this is known as "Elder's Millpond". . .its tough to find if you follow your GPS or road signs.  

Hint:  It is 500 feet west of where Rock House Road dead ends into Elder's Mill Road, on the north side of Elder's Mill Road.  If you're the adventurous sort (I am), half the fun is just finding the place after driving around in circles trying to decipher all the incorrect google maps, blog posts, crew suggestions, notes, etcetera. 

While looking for this place you'll surely get lost, and stumble upon the house used as the backdrop of FRIED GREEN TOMATOES, or DRIVING MISS DAISY ora other local gems.
 Proof.  We found it.  I have an uncanny sense of direction and after throwing out all the maps, notes and turning off the inboard GPS, finally found this place a recent rainy afternoon.

Downtown Woodbury (or is it Senoia?) is much easier to find but you'll be disappointed if you're looking for Halloween decorations or even a zombie outfitter. . . none exist.  I would imagine this is very expensive real estate these days as THE WALKING DEAD has soared in the ratings to become the number 1 American TV show among the coveted 18 - 49 demographic.  Season 4 premiered last week to an astonishing 16.1 million viewers. . .more if DVr and binge viewing are eventually added in to the total.
You will find some interesting and expensive antique shops along the main street in Senoia along with some decent cafes and restaurants in a quaint and unspoiled setting.  But does anyone really need to buy an old sink full of ivy (below)?  I know plenty of people who would kill for some authentic zombie merchandise (hint for the shopkeepers of Senoia).

Hint:  The main street goes by a number of names sure to confuse your GPS;  Broad Street, Rockaway Street, and Main Street are 3 names for the same thoroughfare.
I love the old mills and thought finding Starr's Mill deserted was a real treat on a recent afternoon.  Again, forget the GPS.  Starr's Mill is just outside of Senoia on the NE corner of Route 74 (Joel Cowan Parkway) and 74/85.  Best route in is through the little church parking lot on the NE corner of this intersection.  There are no road signs.  I don't know if the lack of road signs in this region is by design or just the way things are done in the part of Georgia.

On your way back to Atlanta you'll be sure to see plenty of this. . .
 . . . and this . . .the skyscrapers were shrouded in fog but the brake lights of the massive traffic jam on I-75 were clearly visible. . .
 . . .and maybe some of this. . . dozens of jets taking off and landing at the world's busiest airport; Atlanta-Hartsfield Jackson.
See more of my photos of this mostly unspoiled region of Georgia at this link:


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Seattle lifestyle magazine Ville convinced Tyrone Mears, Zach Scott and Nelson Valdez to pose with nothing but a soccer ball for a recent issue. Ostensibly, the story is about what they do to take care of their aging bodies (read it here), but it's safe to say most will be talking about the cover photo:

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