Tuesday, November 15, 2011

It's Groundhog Day...Again-- Part 4

Continued from Nov. 5th. From the Nov.-Dec. Midwest Living Magazine.

Bob Hudgins, who was largely responsible for Woodstock, Illinois, being selected as the site for the movie, usually leads a tour of movie sites on both Saturday and Sunday during the Groundhog Day celebration in the town. One year, "Needle Nose Ned, actor Steve Tobolowski was the guide.

He has a lot of insights on the filming, including the "Honeypot Incident." The tour starts at the 1890 Opera House (former city hall) which stood in the for the Pennsylvanian Hotel in the movie. The tower was where director Harold Ramis looked out at the 19th century square and decided he would film here. This is also where Bill Murray's character Phil Connors tried to commit suicide by jumping out of a window.

The stage in Gobbler's Knob, where the groundhog was pulled out of his tree stump was in the corner of the square across the street from the Opera House.

There are all sorts of specialty shops and restaurants around the square where you'll find the puddle site, Ned's attack on Phil, snowball fight, dance in the gazebo and other scenes as well as the Tip Top Cafe (unfortunately a series of restaurants have all failed at the site. I still think someone should open a rebuilt Tip Top Cafe that looks like the one in the movie.

More to Come. --RoadDog

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