Community Extras
Television Episodes

Blog : Vampire Diaries

Dixie Manor Used as Rebekah Mikaelson’s House in TVD

Dixie Manor Used as Rebekah Mikaelson’s House in TVD

It’s no secret that Covington, Ga is the real Mystic Falls. People travel from all over to visit Covington to see where The Vampire Diaries was filmed and take memorable pictures. I bet you didn’t realize that in several episodes Dixie Manor was used as Rebekah Mikaelson’s Mansion. If you did know that, then kudos to you!

If you’re not a die-hard TVD fan, it is okay! We will go over some background information to catch you up. Rebekah Mikaelson is one of the five Original Vampires who is featured in multiple seasons. She is also one of the main characters in the spin off series, The Originals. Her brother, Klaus, constantly influences her actions. She desires to live a normal human life, instead of being immortal.

Dixie Manor was first seen as Rebekah’s house in episode three, “The Rager”, of season four when Rebekah decided to move out of Klaus’s mansion after a very heated argument. She couldn’t stand to live with her brother any longer so she decided to get her own mansion. In this same episode, Rebekah throws a party for herself and other students, who attend Mystic Falls High School. Rebekah only throws this party to help her not feel alone anymore.

Dixie Manor is also seen in season four episode eleven “Catch Me if You Can.” Looking for a new ally, Rebekah reminds Stefan of how close they once were. One thing leads to another and they end up having a steamy love connection in one of the bedrooms of the mansion. I guess Stefan is over Elena, after all.

Despite all the fighting that has been going on between Elena and Rebekah during season four, Rebekah offers a truce to Elena because she feels bad that Jeremy died. Elena turns her humanity off due to her grief and ends up living with Rebekah in her home for a brief time in season four episode nineteen, “Pictures of You.”


10 Reasons Why Georgia is Great for Film

10 Reasons Why Georgia is Great for Film

Georgia has become a major hot bed for film productions in the past years and it is continuing to grow rapidity. Over the summer, Governor Nathan Deal announced that film and TV productions brought in over $9 Billion Dollars in economic impact in 2017. Just in the past year, over 300 film/television productions were shot in Georgia. In honor of our outstanding growth in the film industry, we are bringing you 10 reasons why Georgia is great for film.

buy provigil forum 1. Film incentives
It is said that Georgia has one of the best film incentive programs in the US. Georgia offers a 20% tax rebate for productions shot in the state with an additional 10% for those who include the Georgia “Peach State” logo in its credits.

order Lyrica online uk 2. Geographical features
From the skyscrapers downtown, to the plains, and all the way up to the mountains in North Georgia, the peach state is the perfect backlot for filming. If you need the hustle and bustle of the city, go to Atlanta, or if you need sandy beaches go to Savannah. Georgia’s southern cities have an old-fashion southern charm with an ample amount of historic homes perfect for filming. With Georgia’s diverse geography, film productions have a variety of diverse backdrops to choose from.

enter 3. The Hollywood of the South
Covington, GA, known as “The Hollywood of the South” has long been THE ideal place for film production companies across the nation. Tourists flock to this small town for its rich film history. TV shows like The Dukes of Hazzard, In the Heat of the Night and most recently The Vampire Diaries, helped put Covington on the map. Also, many films have been produced in our quaint town. Covington has become the crown jewel of Georgia.

4. Home to CNN, TBS, CN
It’s no secret that Atlanta is home to CNN, TBS and Cartoon Network. With these major television broadcasting system’s headquarters ‘ as our next-door neighbor it makes filming a lot easier.

5. Hartsfield Jackson International Airport
Another perk of filming in Georgia is having access to the world’s busiest airport. The Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport offers over 100 domestic and international destinations. Having the Atlanta airport at your fingertips makes traveling easier for film production crews moving in and out the state.

6. Less Extreme Weather
Even though Georgia has unpredictable weather, it’s not extreme like other states. With Georgia’s mild winters and temperate climate, you can shoot anytime for almost any scene. In the wintertime, if you need some green scenery, stop by Savannah Georgia where the foliage remains greens all year around.

7. Less Expensive Amenities
Its already expensive enough to shoot a movie but when it comes to amenities, Georgia is less expensive. Restaurants, supermarkets, transportation, utilities, rent, and more are much more affordable in Georgia. According to Shofur Technologies, food is 8% cheaper and entertain is 17% cheaper compared to Los Angeles. So, by shooting in Georgia your saving some extra bucks when it comes to feeding and housing your crew.

8. Local Universities
In Georgia, there are some local universities who are currently training new and better film crewmembers. Georgia State University, located in downtown Atlanta, Ga, offers degrees in film, video, and digital imaging. GSU alumni have seen the success of the film industry and are involved with many projects. Also, the University of Georgia offers similar opportunities with their studies in video production, screenwriting, and digital media.

9. Economic Growth
Earlier stated in this blog, we said Nathan Deal announced that film and television productions generated over $9 billion in economic impact. Because so many movies are being filmed here and they are doing well in the box office, this sets an example and makes others want to film their movie or television shows here. Television productions, like The Vampire Diaries and The Walking Dead have become HUGE hits and their filming locations are as well.

10.Film Studios
In addition to the new Three Rings Studio being built in Covington, GA, the state of Georgia has a huge amount of studio space and sound stages. Some popular studios in Georgia are Pinewood Studios, Blackhall Studios, and Tyler Perry Studios. With so much studio space, and more being built, Georgia can have multiple film productions in the works simultaneously.

From Podcast to Production: Stream the Amazon Series Lore

From Podcast to Production: Stream the Amazon Series Lore

Have you had the chance to stream the incredible Amazon series, Lore? Based on the popular podcast, this Amazon original series uncovers the real-life events that spawned our darkest nightmares. With just six 40 minute episodes, you can binge watch this series quickly!

Lore follows the podcasts anthology format with each episode featuring a new story. The series combines documentary footage and cinematic scenes to reveal horror legends and their origins. Lore gives us more insight on the monsters we thought we knew. The freaky tales might give you nightmares, so beware.

Critics and fans praised Lore! We can honestly ALL agree on the fact that we wanted more episodes than just six. However, audiences still can enjoy re-watching these episodes and if they want more, they can even listen to the podcast series.

You know what is even better? Three of the episodes of Lore were filmed in Newton County. These certain episodes featured filming locations used from other TV shows and movies filmed in Newton County. For example, in the episode “They Made a Tonic” audiences will notice the same cemetery used in the extremely popular show, The Vampire Diaries.

If you are into werewolves, then watch the fifth episode, “The Beast Within.” This episode was filmed entirely in Porterdale, Ga. This episode even scared me, especially the opening scene! Werewolves may be movie monsters today, yet in 1589, villagers in Bedburg, Germany were convinced that they were plagued by a werewolf. Watch the episode to find out if this is true…

Anyone interested or intrigued by the origins of medical methods for mental illness should watch “Echoes.” Dr. Walter Freeman is known as the father of the icepick lobotomy. He had good intentions to help put an end to all mental hospitals, but it wound up creating an entirely new kind of horror story. This episode will make you cringe, for sure!

Werewolves, vampires, ghosts, and body snatchers…oh my! Stream Lore to learn more about different folklores we have all known and heard throughout the ages.

Covington Courthouse-Jail & Sheriff Forbes Office From TVD

Covington Courthouse-Jail & Sheriff Forbes Office From TVD

Did you know that our very own courthouse was used frequently in The Vampire Diaries? Covington’s beautiful, historic courthouse was the location for Mystic Falls jail and Sheriff Forbes office. Shall we look back on some of the iconic moments where the courthouse is featured in episodes?

In the first season, how can we forget the most epic scene, where Damon jumps off the tower? In “162 candles,” the courthouse is featured when Damon arrives to the sheriff’s department to drop off a box of vervain to Sheriff Forbes. The most important episode of the season, Founder’s Day, Sheriff Forbes finds out the Founder’s Council went behind her back and are planning to kill all the vampires in Mystic Falls. John Gilbert knocks her out and handcuffs her to the fireplace locking her in her office. Yep, John Gilbert finally shows his true colors!

Unfortunately, the courthouse doesn’t appear in the second season until the very last episode As I Lay Dying. Carol Lockwood tells Sheriff Forbes how unhappy she is with her and the lack of progress in getting rid of all the vampires in town. This shows how Elizabeth is on two different sides. Sheriff Forbes locks Elena in jail cell and says it is for her safety, but Elena escapes to save Damon. She actually broke a window with a chair to escape. You go girl!

Season three is a complicated season. The courthouse “Mystic Falls police station” is only shown in three episodes. After Caroline’s father learns that she is a vampire, he tortures Caroline in a jail cell in Disturbing Behavior. I know we all agree that Caroline’s dad has got some MAJOR issues…

The heart pounding episode, Catch Me if You Can from season four left us in a rollercoaster of emotions. The courthouse appears in this episode when Sheriff Forbes and Mayor Hopkins take Atticus Shane in for questioning, about his involvement in the Founder’s Council deaths. Fun fact: This episode had about 2.71 million viewers in the USA. AND the hashtag used during the airing was #RaisingTheStakes because TVD writers were really raising the stakes with the plot!

Covington’s clock tower is yet again seen in the episode Dead Man on Campus. No, it isn’t Damon jumping this time, it’s Katherine. She decides to jump off the clock tower and Stefan saves her. He reminds her, “You’re Katherine Pierce, suck it up.” This is another reason why we love Stefan so much.


In the episode, I’d Leave My Happy Home for You, Elena and Damon jump off the tower together. Seriously…what is up with these people and jumping off towers?? However, if I were a vampire, I would probably jump off a tower too just for fun. We all know it wouldn’t harm me. This scene is very important because this is the last episode where a Petrova Doppelganger will use vampire abilities. Also, this scene shows how truly in love Damon and Elena are with each other. Delena forever!

Let’s talk about how awesome it was to see Matt be promoted to Sheriff in season seven’s, Requiem for a Dream. Matt has always been the sweetest guy with a good heart. He totally deserved to be Mystic Falls new sheriff! Finally, in season eight we see our beloved clock tower again and for the last time! In We’re Planning a June Wedding and I Was Feeling Epic; Vicki Donovan rings the Founder’s bell inside the Mystic Falls clock tower.

We hoped you enjoyed reminiscing and looking back at these iconic moments where our one of a kind clock tower was featured in episodes of The Vampire Diaries.

Economic Impact of Film Tourism in Newton County, Georgia

According to FilmL.A., Georgia is now recognized as the #1 filming location in the world.  The great tax incentives and dynamic landscapes have made the choice simple for production crews, and the economic impact on the state and camera-ready communities has paid off greatly. In 2016, Georgia’s tourism impact generated $61.1 billion in revenue and supported over 450,000 jobs!

In the last year, 320 productions have migrated to Georgia to shoot in various locations. Of these 320 productions, more than 10 have filmed in Covington and Newton County, Georgia, one of the first camera-ready communities in the state. However, the economic impact of film in our area relies on more than just these recent productions.

economic impact of film

Because Covington was shot on-location for popular TV series’ such as the Dukes of Hazzard, In the Heat of the Night, and The Vampire Diaries, fans visit the town frequently to step into the real-life set and backlot city that they know and love. “We love having a television show scout our area because of the longevity a series offers. Because they usually run for several seasons, fans will always want to visit the filming locations of their favorite TV shows,” says Newton County Tourism Director and Film Commissioner, Jenny McDonald. In fact, direct spending from tourists in Covington/Newton County increased by $60 million from 2002 to 2012! And the film legacy in Newton County has only continued to grow since then.

Covington is home to some of the most prominent locations used on-set of the CW’s The Vampire Diaries. Because the series grew in popularity throughout its eight seasons on the air, the volume of vampire fans and tourists visiting the area increased with every season. Over the past few years, the historic town square has welcomed a handful of trendy new restaurants and boutiques for both locals and tourists to enjoy.

economic impact of film

Additionally, Newton County offers a series of tours for guests to enjoy when they visit the area, especially for film tourism. Visitors can choose among self-guided location tours to see historic homes and sites from many local productions, on-location tours with Vampire Stalkers/Mystic Falls Tours, as well as Covington Ghost Tours for local, historic hauntings.

The Georgia Office of Tourism and Economic Development helped the Covington/Newton County Visitor’s Bureau develop the Undead Trail, along with partnering cities,  which makes a necessary pit-stop in our community. Offering tours to our many visitors from all over the world is not only a great experience for our tourists, but also benefits the local economy. During last year’s Vampire Diaries Series Finale Party, over $2500 was raised for the county in just 3 hours from offering tours of the historic courthouse and clocktower.

economic impact of film
Visitors wait in line for attractions during the Friday Night Bites event in 2016

In 2016, tourism in Newton County generated a whopping $129.02 million in direct tourist spending, which was an increase of over $3 million dollars from 2015! The economic impact of film tourism last year also supported local payroll in excess of $23 million, and generated $3.70 million in local tax revenues. Not to mention, Newton County residents saw a significant tax break per household as a result of taxes generated by tourism economic activity.

We are interested to see how the local economic impact of film will be affected once the new Three Ring Studios opens in Covington. This studio will have three campuses and a soundstage for TV, film, and video game production, as well as an awesome backlot for production. These three campuses are currently under development, and the studio is sure to bring a host of new opportunities with it! Once Three Ring Studios is open for business, film capabilities in our community will expand from on-location shooting to whatever a director needs to complete his/her creative vision for a production. To learn more about the current development of this new production studio, follow Three Ring Studios on Facebook and Twitter.

The Best Places in Mystic Falls to Journal for National Dear Diary Day

Dear Diary…

Related image

In the beginning of the CW’s The Vampire Diaries, teenage love is sparked between young Elena Gilbert and vampiric Stefan Salvatore as the show reveals their innermost fears and desires through journaling. The first episode gives us a glimpse inside the minds of both characters, and also gives us the first inkling of how perfect they both seem to be for each other.

Stefan: “Don’t worry, I didn’t…read it.”

Elena: “No? Why not? Most people would have.”

Documenting one’s life in a personal diary is a huge theme recurring throughout the series, as Elena writes in a diary throughout every season of the show. Various episodes also mention specific passages in Stefan’s diary, as well as the old journals of Johnathan Gilbert from the 1800’s.

If you’re a juggernaut for journaling, what better place could there be to relax with a little bit of writing in the real location of fictional Mystic Falls? Today, channel your inner “Stelena” by enjoying the best places in Mystic Falls to journal for National Dear Diary Day:

The Best Places in Mystic Falls for National Dear Diary Day:


Square Park
best places in mystic falls

The park on the square in Downtown Covington is the one location in town you can visit time after time, and feel like you are really sitting in Mystic Falls. Many scenes and Mystic Falls events were filmed right on our square that feature the exterior of our storefronts and boutiques as well as the iconic historic clocktower. Visitors can enjoy the view from the Square Park any time of day, and it’s the perfect spot to collect your thoughts, and jot them down while soaking up the southern sunshine.


Southview Cemetery
best places in mystic falls

This location isn’t necessarily our first choice for a journaling locale, but if you really want to channel your inner Elena, take your diary to South View Cemetery and enjoy the peace and quiet among the many headstones that litter the landscape there. Many “cemetery” scenes in The Vampire Diaries were filmed at this local site as well! So, it’s the perfect spot, just off the square, for a die-hard Diaries fan.


Turner Lake Recreation Complex
best places in mystic falls

Another scenic, peaceful place to enjoy a little personal journaling is at our local Turner Lake Recreational Park. The Turner Lake Complex is conveniently located about a mile from the square, and offers a multitude of walking trails and shaded areas where you can hang a hammock or take a blanket for your afternoon of soul-searching. We recommend finding a spot right next to the lake, which is why this recreational park is one of the best places in Mystic Falls to enjoy some journaling!


Factory Shoals Park
best places in mystic falls

Another incredibly peaceful site for diary-writing could be at Factory Shoals Park on the outskirts of Newton County. The shoals provide the perfect location for personal meditation as the water mellifluously runs over the rocks. This beautiful nature park, situated along the Alcovy River, contains over 450-acres for your diary-writing endeavors. The park is a haven for picnickers, fishermen, campers, swimmers, hikers, rafters, nature lovers, AND journalers.


So what are you waiting for? Grab your diary, and get over to Covington, Georgia -AKA- Mystic Falls to enjoy the sights and attractions while writing in your diary. If all your soul searching works up an appetite, try one of many Hollywood-themed menu options in Downtown Covington. Our community is the premier location in Georgia to experience history, hauntings, Hollywood, and happiness!

The ‘Reel’ Mystic Falls: A Day in the Life of George Lockwood the Cat

george lockwood the cat

As the sun rises over this gorgeous Southern manor I call my home, I open my eyes and stretch my fuzzy white paws for a moment before getting up to go see what my owners are up to. First, I take a moment to collect myself and enjoy a nice tongue bath before my morning exploration. After all, the grounds at Worthington Manor provide lots of beautiful scenery and feline fun. I’m George Lockwood the cat, and I’m going to give you a peek inside a day in the life at Worthington Manor, more popularly known as the famous Lockwood Mansion from The Vampire Diaries.

george lockwood the cat

I truly miss having the cast and crew of the series at our home for the filming of many episodes of The Vampire Diaries. The entire grounds would become a flurry of activity as crew members transformed my home into Mayor Lockwood’s gorgeous mansion. And the best part is all the belly rubs and kitty cuddles! I was the true star of the production as I meandered my way through the set and soaked up all the attention. In fact, my very best human-friend, Ian Somerhalder, admits that I am one of his favorite felines. Fans always obsess over how cute Ian is, until they meet me and see that I’m even cuter.

george lockwood the cat
Ian Somerhalder taking a moment to show George Lockwood some love

Even the almighty vampires take a knee just to scratch my belly! The best part about being a cat on-set of the Lockwood Mansion are the many parties that were filmed here, like the Founder’s Party, Masquerade Ball, and the legendary Steroline wedding! And I’m always dressed for the occasion with my silky fur tuxedo.

george lockwood the catAlthough it was very sad to see my vampire friends and admirers go, we still welcome visitors from all over the world every week to tour our property and experience the famous manor firsthand. Many of our tourists take a moment to pet my smooth, silky fur and take selfies with the famed George Lockwood the Cat. I’m also a pro at photobombing your vampire-inspired photos. After all, I’m the true celebrity of the real Lockwood Mansion!

Even in the midst of all this Hollywood fun, a frisky, green-eyed feline like myself can also appreciate the chance to enjoy a little peace and quiet. My favorite thing to do on a warm afternoon at the manor is take a walk in the grass, then curl up in a planter to bask in the sun for a cozy afternoon catnap. I’ve got several planters and flower beds staked out just for my napping pleasure. The landscape of the manor provides lots of shade to cat around, relax, and dream of catching mice.

george lockwood the cat

Sometimes I go into the front yard to visit the angelic fountain where Mrs. Lockwood was drowned in The Vampire Diaries, and enjoy a few refreshing laps of water. I also enjoy passing the time with my signature move, “The George,” where I slink down the steps with my entire body. You should try it sometime!

george lockwood the cat
Rocky the Raccoon lurking on the grounds while George sleeps on the job

When I start to feel a bit lonely (which is almost never), I can go hang out with my colorful pal, the pheasant, or mosey down to our pond to visit the swans that live here as well. I rule the manor and patrol the grounds for security, chasing away any uninvited squirrels or the pesky neighborhood raccoon, Rocky. It’s a hard job, but some kitty has to do it.

I usually conclude my evenings with a gourmet dish of Friskies kibble and an extra-long belly rub— courtesy of my owners, Ben and Ralph. All of this love and attention, and the pristine beauty of the manor can make a kitty truly feel like royalty. After all, being so lazy and loved takes lots of practice and hard work!

If you want to see the real Lockwood Mansion for yourself, and have a chance to rub the fat, fuzzy belly of George Lockwood the cat, book your tour with Vampire Stalkers/Mystic Falls Tours! They’ll take you on a journey with the inside scoop of select Vampire Diaries film locations, including our Worthington Manor. Stay up to date with my crazy kitty antics by following me on Facebook @SirGeorgeLockwood, or on Twitter at @George0Lockwood.

Top Vampire Diaries Film Locations in the ‘Reel’ Mystic Falls

Earlier this year, we ushered in the final moments of the eight-season series, The Vampire Diaries. For eight years in a row, CW production teams & crews took over areas of Covington, GA in order to create the landscape of fictional Mystic Falls. Because these local Vampire Diaries film locations are actual homes & structures shot on-location, it makes Mystic Falls come alive in a very reel way. Covington has branded itself #ForeverMysticFalls, because the spirit of the show and everyone’s favorite characters endure although the series has wrapped.

Luckily, the series is still available on Netflix so that fans may relive their favorite moments on-screen. The only thing better than watching your favorite moments of movie-magic are seeing and feeling them for yourself! Tours of film locations have been running for several years, and business is still booming even post-finale. The following spots are the top Vampire Diaries film locations in Downtown Covington, the reel Mystic Falls:

Courthouse and Square Park
vampire diaries film locations

This is the most popularly used local landmark throughout the entire Vampire Diaries series. Some of the most memorable moments of our historic courthouse and Square Park include Damon & Elena jumping off the top of the clocktower, Enzo’s steamy make-out session with the coat check girl, Alaric escaping from the sewer below the clocktower, and the Founders Day parade. These are just a few of the many countless moments on our square!

Covington has The Vampire Diaries to thank for eight years worth of film to make our historic square & courthouse the iconic tourist attractions that they are today. We are also pleased to welcome the popular supernatural spinoff, The Originals, to film in Newton County areas like local Porterdale, as well as Covington, and keep the spirit of Mystic Falls alive.

Mystic Grill

vampire diaries film locations
Photo via @nicolehaser on Instagram

Not only is the Mystic Grill Restaurant a great place for a bite to eat, it’s also a great way to see a piece of reel film history! A very popular scene that features the Mystic Grill as a location is when Lexi, Stefan’s longtime friend, is staked by Damon in Season 1.

The stairs on the side of the building are where one of the Original brothers, Finn, was staked in Season 3.  Damon also ripped out the heart of a stranger in the alleyway at the bottom of the stairwell in Season 7.

Worthington Manor -aka- Lockwood Mansion
vampire diaries film locations

This local home should look very familiar to any Vampire Diaries fan.  Worthington Manor is easily recognizable from the front gate as Lockwood Mansion, were many parties were held throughout the series, as well as the masquerade ball, founders ball, and the famous “Steroline” wedding in the series finale. Owners Ben and Ralph keep the grounds beautifully manicured so the location always looks just as pristine as it does on-screen.

The Gilbert House
vampire diaries film locations

There are several notable film moments that take place on the front porch of the Gilbert House, including the juicy Damon and Katherine kiss during the finale episode of Season 1.  This historic home on Floyd Street is also where Original brother, Klaus, tried to break down the front door in Season 3 to find Elena. According to the Vampire Diaries canon, Elena burned the house down in season 4 after her brother Jeremy was killed.

However, the reel Gilbert House is still very much intact, and was still continuously used for filming, especially in season 6, as well as the series finale. See if you can scope out this location by driving down historic Floyd Street!

Covington City Cemetery on Elm Street
vampire diaries film locations

Covington City Cemetery his is the very real and historic graveyard where many civil war soldiers and confederate congressman are buried. It is in this location that Isobel, Elena’s mother, took her life, in addition to being the burial place of Jon Gilbert and Aunt Jenna.  It’s also the location that Damon admitted to Stefan in Season 2 that he was dying of a werewolf bite, inflicted by Tyler Lockwood.

There are many other local homes & sites that can be identified as Vampire Diaries filming locations. All you have to do is re-watch episodes of the hit vampire series, and plan a trip to Covington, GA to experience the reel Mystic Falls! It just may haunt you forever if you don’t…

The ‘Reel’ Film Covington Experience: Film Tourism in Covington, GA

In the golden age of traveling fun and wanderlust, a popular travel trend on the rise is dedicated to film tourism. We’ve seen a huge surge in film tourism in Georgia over the past 10 years with Hollywood productions, big and small, flocking to the Peach State to set up shop. The state’s amazing film tax incentives and dynamic landscapes make it a great place to shoot. Covington, GA is among one of the first communities in Georgia to become “Camera-Ready” and has really reaped the benefits of film tourism in recent years. If you’d like to experience all things film in Covington/Newton County, we’ve got some very special attractions just for you!

In recent years, our Newton County Visitor’s Bureau has partnered with local merchants to develop a series of tours to satisfy your film tourism craving. The most popular tours available are with Vampire Stalkers/Mystic Falls Tours, where you’ll get the experience the on-location homes of Mystic Falls that are featured on both The Vampire Diaries and The Originals.

film tourism
Photo via @ifiwereacoolkid on Instagram

Visitors from all over the globe travel to our town daily to experience this tour. Tourists also have the ability to shop among a wide selection of vampire merchandise and memorabilia at the On Location Gifts store, run by Mystic Falls Tours.

Another tour that’s available on select evenings is the local Covington Ghost Tours. While this tour doesn’t focus as much on the film aspect of our community, visitors who take this tour are still able to see many of the historic homes featured on In the Heat of the Night, as well as the the cemetery featured in The Vampire Diaries. The tour also stops by our very own Twelve Oaks Bed & Breakfast— which has a very rich film history of its own!

Additionally, our team at the Visitor’s Center has developed a self-guided walking tour for viewing the antebellum homes just off the square, many of which were used on-location for In the Heat of the Night. There is also a self-guided tour map available of various Hollywood “stars” around the square that are included in the Covington Walk of Stars.

film tourism
Photo via @bryanridarick on Instagram

Our iconic courthouse on the Downtown Covington Square is quite famous when it comes to film. Visitors to the courthouse may view the set pieces from the movie Selma, which featured scenes inside the courthouse and on the square. The main courtroom on the second level was also used in the 2011 remake of Footloose, but is not available for regular tours. Other productions that show our courthouse & Square Park include The Vampire Diaries, Dukes of Hazzard, In the Heat of the Night, Remember the Titans, and Run Ronnie Run.

film tourism

The Georgia Department of Economic Development and Tourism with Explore Georgia designated Covington as one of the various areas in the state to receive a special Selfie Spot that shows off our courthouse in the background of your self-portraits. Visitors to the Square Park can find the blue and purple decal on the sidewalk with suggested hashtags: #GeorgiaFilm and #ForeverMysticFalls.

Another very special attraction we’ve just opened this week is Georgia’s first ever television & film museum, right here on the square. We are calling it our Pop-Up TV & Film Museum because it literally just popped up in this location, and we are hoping to find a more permanent home in the future. Our first visitors came to the soft opening of the museum on Saturday, July 1st, and we saw an incredible turnout of museum tourists during Stars & Stripes Fest this past Tuesday on July 4th.

film tourism
Photo via the Rockdale/Newton Citizen

Many of our visitors were thrilled to experience re-created scenes from The Vampire Diaries and have the chance to see and touch pieces from on-set. Also included are items from In the Heat of the NightSleepy Hollow, and many of the feature films that were shot here in Covington/Newton County. Though this museum is mainly featuring local production, we would like to offer our visitors a taste of all things Georgia Film. We are currently accepting donations of items related to Georgia state productions to show off to our many film tourists. Use and follow hashtag #FilmCovington to share your content and view content from other visitors.

film tourism
Photo via the Rockdale/Newton Citizen

And if this isn’t enough of a reel taste of the original Hollywood of the South®, we have a culinary tour of sorts with special “Hollywood” branded cocktails, local entrees, and sweet treats to curb your appetite. So what are you waiting for? Book your stay at one of our many great area hotels and come experience history, hauntings, Hollywood, and happiness!

Inside the Reel Houses of Mystic Falls: Grams Bennett

grams bennett's house

It’s no secret that Covington/Newton County is home to the famous Mystic Falls clocktower, the Gilbert House, and Lockwood Mansion. But did you know that the character for Bonnie’s Grandmother, Sheila Bennett or Grams Bennett, also lived in a local house was used on location for filming? This magical matron was the co-star in many episodes of The Vampire Diaries, and we bet you could spot scenes using the local home if you really pay attention!

grams bennett's house

Witchcraft is the force of power that drives Grams, and it wasn’t until later in the series that we found out that Bonnie is capable of being a very powerful witch as well. According to The Vampire Diaries fandom, the Bennett’s are descendants from the long line of famously powerful witches of Salem. Even at her advanced age, Grams Bennett was still a very powerful witch—which is ultimately what ended her life.

grams bennett's house

“You know your happiness means everything to me,” is a typical line one might hear from their grandmother. But we all know that Sheila Bennett is one feisty granny you most definitely do not want to anger! Her most epic moment of magic was while talking to Damon, her most unfavorite vampire, and exclaimed “You don’t wanna mess with me!” before inflicting him with intense, crippling pain.

Our last moments with Sheila Bennett were in episode Fool Me Once, after overuse of her own witchcraft on behalf of her beloved granddaughter. She and Bonnie successfully lowered a spell on the tomb that contained Katherine, and doing this greatly weakened Grams. She peacefully died on her bed at the end of that episode, but the Bennett legacy continued to live on.

After all, don’t forget Grams Bennett’s famous quote: “Witches talk, even on the other side.”

grams bennett's house

But don’t worry, there’s nothing witchy to worry about at this local film location! The quaint little cottage-style home located on Conyers street isn’t open for tours, but can still be admired from the public street or sidewalk. If you’re interested in learning more about this Mystic Falls film location and other stops on the self-guided tour in the Hollywood of the South™, visit our Facebook page and contact us today!