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Thu Mar 22, 2012, 04:25 PM

North Carolina, where 'Hunger Games' was filmed, getting ready for fan tourism

North Carolina, where 'Hunger Games' was filmed, getting ready for fan tourism

By Martha Waggoner, The Associated Press | Associated Press Wed, Mar 21, 2012

RALEIGH, N.C. - Fans of "The Hunger Games" are already turning up in North Carolina, seeking out places where the movie was shot, from old-growth forests to an abandoned mill town.
And the tourism industry is prepared to cash in on them, with everything from hotel packages and zip lines tours, to re-enactments of scenes from the film and lessons in survival skills.


But fans are already coming. "I'm getting too many visitors," said the property owner, Wade Shepherd, 83, who hasn't read "The Hunger Games."
"Day and night, they're driving through, taking pictures, getting out and walking. I'm just bombarded with people."


Wife and I planned on visiting Transylvania County and the Mt. Pisgah area on our road trip in May. Now I'm thinking I might go to some of the waterfall areas in southern Virginia/northern North Carolina instead, rather than get caught up in the herd of fellow tourists.

Any thoughts fom DU's North Carolinians (other than "we don't need any more Californians visiting here"?

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Reply North Carolina, where 'Hunger Games' was filmed, getting ready for fan tourism (Original post)
Adsos Letter Mar 2012 OP
sharp_stick Mar 2012 #1
TalkingDog Mar 2012 #2
Adsos Letter Mar 2012 #3
TalkingDog Mar 2012 #4
Tunkamerica Apr 2012 #6
TalkingDog Apr 2012 #7
CRK7376 Mar 2012 #5

Response to Adsos Letter (Original post)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 04:49 PM

1. It probably won't be that bad

My guess is that it'll be good news for some of these places that need something pretty desperately.

It likely be on par with the visits to the Titanic graves in Nova Scotia when the movie came out in 1997. There were flowers and teddy bears placed on grave 227 for years, maybe it still happens, just because the marker says J. Dawson.

It was something to see, I'd never heard of movie tourism like this but it sure didn't hurt the local economy.


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Response to Adsos Letter (Original post)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 05:12 PM

2. If you go into the woods, take out what you take in, including feces.

Don't ask us to say stuff because you think our accents are cute.

Don't try to imitate our accents. (in this household that will bring on a verbal beatdown)

If someone offers you livermush (liver, cornmeal, headmeat) don't ask what's in it then curl up your nose. Try it, it's good... fried.

Grits (even cheese-grits... NOT cheesy grits) are also good. Most like them with salt and butter. Some with sugar.

Sugar is the South's national condiment. Cooks will put it in anything; including deviled eggs. Be prepared... the gag reflex can catch you unawares. Spitting out food would be considered rude.

Try the Barbeque. We have warring factions over which sauce base is better: vinegar or tomato. Just go with the flow and try not to choose a side.

When people call you "honey" "sweetie" "sugar" or any other term of endearment, they are not being familiar, that's just our way.

Flirting is a national past time. Don't get too strung out about it if somebody seems to be giving your or your partner the hairy-eyeball. Just enjoy the attention.

If you don't drink sugar in your tea, you will have to ask your wait-staff for UN-sweetened tea. Otherwise you will get brown sugar water. You can also ask for half and half

We move slow, we talk slow, we consider, ponder and mull. If you can't move into that stream, your time here will be very frustrating. It took my Spousal Unit a while to adjust after he moved here from Pittsburgh. But he came to see the sense of it and now going home drives him a little nuts because everything is so rushed. Use whatever technique gets you through the long line at the grocery. Then be prepared to have a little small talk with whoever you were waiting for.

Don't EVER ask anybody (especially oldsters) "How you doing today?" Mostly because they will tell you. In great and very graphic TMI terms. This can take anywhere from 5 minutes to half hour of your day. Try to find a more neutral way to express your innate friendliness.

The phrase: "Bless your heart" can mean multiple things: "Oh, sugar, I sympathize." or, alternately, "Man, you are a completely inept dumb-fuck. Do you have a keeper?"

Loud is rude. Cursing in front of children is rude. Taking the Lord's name in vain is rude. Lots of things are rude. Just treat people like they are your maiden aunty. You'll be fine.

You will, invariably, be asked 3 questions (in varying forms and under different circumstances):

Who's your Daddy? / Are you the (insert surname here) from (town next door)? Translation: What is your history, your heritage. Most people can trace their lineage back to their families in the UK or there abouts. Linguists come to the NC Appalachians to study the accents because they are very close to Elizabethan English. History matters.

What Church do you go to? Translation: Do I know people you know? Are you in my socio-economic circle? Should I avoid you like the plague because you are a heathen? (although they won't, but they might get a little cool)

What does your family (or daddy) do? Translation: How much money do you have? Are you land poor (lots of land - no money), genteel poor (educated, well-heeled, but no fortune) or some other variant. This ties into socio-economic and social concerns.

Edited to add: If you are a guy, prepare to be the person who is primarily addressed by EVERYBODY. If you are a woman, prepared to be stared past to the man nearest you. If you are not traveling with a man, politely let the person you are dealing with know...Oh, he's not with me... Then they will address you.

Men will open doors for women. Women, to a certain degree, know and expect this is going to happen and go with it... mostly because it really can fuck up traffic flow if you don't.

Men will also try to help you with heavy items, and generally treat you like their maiden aunty. Just enjoy the attention and try not to ponder too deeply the implications of the underlying sexism. (Trust me, we women are diligently working on ushering the guys into the 21st century, but it takes time) End edit.

People will give you directions based on landmarks that were there 25 years ago. Be aware.

Don't ever say: In California we do X (insert thing you do in CA that we do differently here). Just pretend we are a mysterious and foreign land. Enjoy the culture.

Hope this helps.

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Response to TalkingDog (Reply #2)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 08:29 PM

3. What a great read! It's all sound advice, and much of it common enough to my own demographic...

even though I'm a native Californian, as is my wife (we have our own specifics re: cuisine, etc).

I've been through the South a couple of times, without any embarrassments that I'm aware of (very important modifier there) and enjoyed myself immensely.

I will admit that, as far as the opening-of-doors thing goes, folks out here will often hold a door and proffer the right-of-way for women or men and I'm wondering (just out of curiosity) if that is uncommon there. If so, it would likely explain the odd look I got from a fellow my age heading into a Waffle House in Kingsport, Tennessee. He seemed a bit taken aback, but was pleasant in his thanks. I wondered at the time if it had insulted him (insult is too strong a term, but I can't think of another at the moment. Surprised, uncomfortable?).

I spent some significant years being raised by my grandparents, who were Protestant and old school on manners and considerations. I value that experience.

Anyway...I was really kind of wondering what people thought about skipping the waterfalls in Transylvania County and focusing, instead, on those of the northern North Carolina/southern Virginia area. For North Carolina I'm thinking specifically of the Linville Falls area. We've got thirteen days on the road, with no solid or strict itinerary, and I am really looking forward to the trip.

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Response to Adsos Letter (Reply #3)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 10:23 PM

4. Doors.

Generally men open for women, no problem. Women can and do open doors for men. And if they are infirm either sex can open the door to help. But, generally men are manly enough to open their own doors... bro code and all that. So probably no insult, but as you suggested, more taken aback that the unwritten rule had been flouted.

Linville Gorge and Falls are GREAT places to visit. You'll want to cruise along the Blue Ridge Parkway for a while. Please notice the WPA workmanship on the parkway itself and on the bridges and overpasses.

Old Hampton's Store is an old fashion mountain general store in the area. Probably worth stopping by.

I have some friends who opened and run an art center on the other side of Boone in Todd, NC. Todd is on the New River (the 2nd oldest river in the world). If you decide to stop by, it's Elkland Art Center and Tom Sternal and Martha Enzmann are the folks who run it. You could contact them through their website if you wanted to go visit.

If you have any more questions, I'll answer the ones I can.

Have fun.

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Response to TalkingDog (Reply #2)

Mon Apr 2, 2012, 06:23 AM

6. I open the door for everybody.

hate grits, sweet tea, won't try livermush and have never been offered it, address women directly, will help anyone lift anything if they look like they need help, have never been asked if i was poor and would never even think to ask... etc.

I've lived in the mountains, the piedmont and the triangle and have known people from all parts of NC.

You're either in a strange part of NC that fell out of time, or you're just trying to be funny.

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Response to Tunkamerica (Reply #6)

Mon Apr 2, 2012, 10:10 AM

7. No. I grew up here. Over half a century now. I like grits, hate sweet tea.

And I'm merely relaying things people who have moved here (from other parts of the country) have mulled over in discussing their lives here, things that have happened to me (and my friends) and some long term culture studies through people watching.

If you actually read what I wrote and think about it critically, instead of a surface reading, I didn't say people would ask you how much money you made directly. I said - in some form-. So it could be a question about your job or what your family "is into" i.e. farming, running a business or if you work in a mill or factory.

All of those jobs have a socio-cultural standing. If you think that is untrue, then perhaps you aren't very observant and that's why you are missing a lot of the patterns that occur in social interactions.

Let me ask you a question about a common -below the radar - "southern thing" that happens in situations where food is shared: What is the course of interaction when a person at the table (perhaps the host, perhaps not, asks if anybody needs (food item X... salt, bread, butter, etc.)? This can alternately be phrased as: Does everybody have enough (food item X) or Would you (specific person) like (food item X)?

Not what one is supposed to do... which is obviously to respond to the question, but what DOES happen? The social exchange that goes on...

There have been a number of times I have seen this go very wrong for non-Southerners when they are dealing with Southerners who are more .... let's just call it old-fashioned. And shared a laugh over it with the other fish who have become aware of the water they are swimming in.

I await your reply with "baited breath"... ha!

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Response to Adsos Letter (Original post)

Tue Mar 27, 2012, 04:24 PM

5. Come on Down!

Life is nearly perfect in our southwestern corner of NC. I'm actually from Northwestern NC, nearly identical, but who cares. It's the NC mountains! I look forward to seeing the movie, just finished reading the book. Our Scout troop does a yearly white water rafting trip on the Natahala and we love going to the Great Smokey mountains. I've lost count of all the backpacking trips and hiking trails I've done in this part of my great state. So come one and all for a great time in the NC mountains! Spend your money in NC.

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