Howdy, y’all! If you’re currently in Austin, Texas you’re either loving South By Southwest or completely hating every single second of the week-long event. If you’re an SXSWInteractive person, congrats nerds, you made it through the whole thing. If you’re a SXSWFilm person, I’m sure you’ll get a chance to talk to Robert Rodriguez at the next secret industry party on 6th street. If you’re a SXSWMusic person, remember Uber isn’t going to be easy to take home after the outdoor stage concerts.
But if you’re in Austin and have some extra time before or after all your activities, and can easily answer the question: “What Friday Night Lights season two plot line do all fans consider to never have happened?”, then may I suggest taking this tour.
In 2013, I went to Austin for the first time and loved it. I didn’t go for SXSW, but rather the ATX Television Festival, which I’ve since gone to three times, including last year, when both of us went and lived in a weird dream world of Dillon, Texas and Stars Hollow, Connecticut combined.
FNL was shot entirely in Austin, which is why the series has that true Texas feel, despite Austin not being a small town. Luckily for you Panthers/East Dillon Lions fans out there, there are still a number of real filming locations available to visit and snap a picture in front of. So have fun SXSW-ers, and remember if you’re stuck in the middle of a mosh pit and need to go to the bathroom during Coheed and Cambria’s set – Clear Eyes, Full
Bladders Hearts, Can’t Pee Lose.
A Stalker’s Guide to Dillon, Texas
Howdy y’all! I recently went to Austin, Texas for a brief weekend getaway, for a few reasons. One: I always wanted to go to Austin, since I heard it was the most un-Texas Texas city in the state. During my road trip across the country in 2009, Austin was on the list of possible cities to go, but we due to time constraints (and the fact we wanted to not drive across desert for another 10 hours), we opted to skip Austin, and I’ve put the city on the top of my bucket list ever since. Two: I attended the ATX Television Festival, which is a new festival for TV fans and those who want to break into the industry, and it was full of screenings, panels, and reunions from fave shows. You may have heard about the Boy Meets World bonanza, and I also attended the American Dreams and Party of Five reunions, and sat in on Parenthood and Veronica Mars panels! Not to mention Friday Night Lights. Which brings me to reason three: Friday Night Lights. The show was set in the fictional town of Dillion, Texas, but was shot entirely in Austin. Ever since I marathoned (and obsessed over) the series in 2010, I made it my goal to go to Austin and find all the filming locations.
So, if you’re a
superfan stalker like me, and find yourself in Austin, here’s a guide to Dillon by way of Austin.
The Taylor House
6805 De Paul Cove, Austin TX 78723
The house were the greatest TV couple/parents lived. They should make this place a national landmark. PS: The Taylor, Riggins, and Alamo Freeze are all close to each other, so you can do it all in one fell swoop!
The Riggins House
2604 Lehigh Dr. Austin, TX 78723
No sign of Riggs 😦
5900 Manor Rd. Austin, TX 78723
Fun fact: the Alamo Freeze is actually a Dairy Queen. So you can reenact Matt’s proposal to Julie and then grab an oreo blizzard.
3009 Kuhlman Ave. Austin, TX 78702
Grandma Saracen and her tiara not included.
Del Valle Field
2404 Shapard Lane, Del Valle, TX
The FNL fieldhouse is still in tact and on a random street near the Austin airport. The only thing still up and running nearby are a few trailers – like trailer park trailers. But you could clearly see the football field and the stands, which is pretty cool. The area was actually used for two ‘sets’, with the Panthers on the left, and when East Dillion needed a field, they built the Lions homefield on the other side of the Panthers’ bleachers!
Here’s me and my friend Suz hanging with Riggins at the fieldhouse…
PS: I didn’t just come up with these locations, it’s easily found on the internet – including here!!!
And to round out my tour of FNL filming locations, the ATX Festival also had a couple of FNL events, including an outdoor screening of State (Season 1 finale) and a panel with the cast! The screening, which appropriately took place on Friday night, was great because a lot of the cast members were there to meet with fans and introduce the ep. I got to meet most of them, and I still can’t believe it happened!
AND THEN, the next morning was the FNL panel, where we were surprised by a couple guests:
COACH AND MRS. COACH, Y’ALL!!!!!! I think I may have started crying.Who knows. But you can always bet on me crying. I shared the same air as the greatest couple ever.
Thanks for the great time, Austin/Dillon! See y’all next time!