Our first stop on our weekend tour was at the Malabar Farm Restaurant where we were treated to a complimentary lunch from the restaurant manager, Kim Williams. WOW!...the food here is fantastic! Itis an "absolute must" if you are in the area. A big "Thank You" to Kim and her staff for their wonderful hospitality. Our server (twice...we went back on Saturday) Jay, was simply the best! Carol and I will be back soon for some Crab Cakes and the Blueberry Cream Pie!
Our server Jay, and Kim Williams at Malabar Farm Restaurant
After our wonderful lunch at the Malabar Farm Restaurant, Carol and I traveled about a mile down the road to the Malabar Farm State Park where the Pugh Cabin is located. This was the location where I portrayed "GlennQuentin" for the opening "love scene" in the movie. Sybil Burskey, Program Administrator of the park, was a wonderful host. She made sure that Carol and I were taken care of as I greeted guests at the cabin. While at the cabin, I would tell visitors how the opening scene was shot, and answered questions about the filming. After my time at the cabin on Saturday, Sybil let us take a tour of author Louis Bromfield's mansion which is also located on the grounds. This is where HumphreyBogart and Lauren Bacall were married and spent their wedding night.
Thank you to Sybil and her staff, and to all the "Shawshank" fans that took the time to come out to Pugh Cabin...especially the couple that "re-enacted" my scene against the door while my wife took their picture!
Our Friday ended with an evening at the Renaissance Theatre. Our night began with James Kisicki and me doing an interview with Mansfield News Journalwriter Jami Kinton, who was also doubling as the interviewer for the documentary "Shawshank Reflection" being filmed by Ryan Niemiec of Digital Dynamix. We then ventured into the theatre balcony and watched one of the top 100 movies of all time..."The Shawshank Redemption" on the huge theatre screen. They even used an old 35mm projector to cast the classic film onto the huge movie screen.
Because of a delayed flight, Bob Gunton(Warden Norton) arrived near the end of the movie. James and I met with Bob in the lobby of the theatre as autograph seekers were already lined up with photos and other memorabilia to be signed. I've never had this experience before , but it's one I'll never forget. Once the movie ended, 700 moviegoers and one and a half hours later, the three of us were done signing our names on just about anything that had the words "Shawshank Redemption" on it. We had a great time, we would joke about how Jim was the only one out of the three of us who "didn't die" in the movie, and Jim razzing me on my "quick signature" compared to his "perfect penmanship". I couldn't end the evening without myself getting at the end of the line to receive autographed pictures from Jim and Bob.
Our weekend was coming to an end Saturday night as Carol and I, and Jim and his wife Debbie were given a limo ride to a "sold out" 40's & 50's themed cocktail reception at The Ohio State Reformatory. Doris Miller, wife of Charles "Bud" Miller, also rode with us. Bud is the owner of the old car in the movie that belonged to Glenn Quentin...so essentially it was my car. Once we entered the prison walls, we were greeted by the volunteer staff that works at the prison. This is where Carol and I were introduced to our "shadow", Diana Riggleman. Diana is a volunteer at the prison, but for the night she was assigned to Carol and me. She was to make sure we had "food and drink in hand" and that whatever we needed. Diana was, as I like to say, FANTASTIC! I felt bad, I kept trying to make her drink and have fun instead of "waiting" on us. She even gave us a tour of the prison later on ...at least that's what Carol told me...a lot of Great Lakes Brewing Co. went down!
A funny thing happened to me before our prison tour. Paul Smith of The OhioState Reformatory, and Lee Tassiff, of the Mansfield/Richland County Convention andVisitors Bureau, presented me with awards thanking me for my participation in the Shawshank Reunion. Bob Gunton and James Kisicki were also given awards for their participation. I was stunned and at a loss for words trying to give an acceptance speech...I still don't remember what I said!
Thank you Paul, Lee, and Jodie!
Jodie Puster-Snavely and Scott
Paul Smith and Lee Tassiff presenting awards.
The #1 lady of the night...our "shadow" Diana Riggleman