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Bridgton inspired many of King's works, from The Dark Half, Cujo, Needful Things, Stand By Me (The Body), The Mist, Under the Dome and The Dead Zone.
The Food City in Bridgton was the real location that inspired 'The Mist'
Derry is based almost entirely on Steven King's hometown of Bangor, Maine.
We visited the real places of Derry:
The Standpipe, Paul Bunyan Statue, Bev Marsh's house, the Falcon Bar, The Derry Town House, Juniper Hill, The Barrens, the real Adrian Mellon, Aladdin Theater, Up-Mile Hill, Witcham Street, Stan's Birdbath, 29 Neibolt Street, and more!
Read more here...
Dark Score Lake
Although most sources cite Kezar Lake as the inspiration for Dark Score Lake, we found a likely candidate in exactly the location indicated in King's Solar Eclipse map path close to the Canadian border called Chain of Ponds, consisting of a string of connected lakes - Round Pond, Natanis Pond, Long Pond, Bag Pond & Lower Pond. Often King's stories used more than one real life location merged into the fictional place.
Orrington is the real life location where King was inspired to write Pet Sematary.
Stu Tinker of SK Tours explained the incident that inspired the story, and revealed where the real 'Pet Sematary' is.
See the video and find out more about Pet Sematary here...
Mt. Hope Cemetery
Mt. Hope Cemetery was both the inspiration and filming location for 'Pet Sematary'
Lisbon Falls was where King went to High School when he lived in nearby Durham. Many of his works found real life inspiration here, from Carrie to Stand by Me (The Body), Graveyard Shift and 11-22-63. We were lucky to visit in 2015 prior to the demolition of the Worumbo Mill and got the chance to interview Frank Anicetti at his 'Moxie Store' where he revealed the true inspiration for 'The Body'. Frank passed away on May 22, 2017 and his store (Kennebec Fruit Company - but known locally as the 'Moxie Store') at the corner of Main & Lisbon Streets in Lisbon Falls is now Frank's Restaurant in his honor.
Read more here...
Durham was the childhood home of Stephen King and the real inspiration for many works, including Salem's Lot, Stand by Me (The Body) and IT. King's home was right next door to a large rock quarry - inspiration for the 'apocalyptic rock fight' in 'IT'. Runaround Pond nearby was the location of a real life incident of King's friends and leeches which inspired the scene in Stand by Me, and Harmony Grove cemetery nearby was the real life inspiration for Salem's Lot.
The Bangor Airport was a filming location for The Langoliers
Yes, there is really a giant Paul Bunyan statue at Bassey Park in Derry aka Bass Park in Bangor.
Jade of the Orient
We had lunch at Oriental Jade in Bangor - the real life inspiration for Jade of the Orient in 'IT'
Juniper Hill from 'IT' was inspired by the real life Eastern Maine Insane Asylum now known as the Dorothea Dix Psychiatric Center
29 Neibolt Street
29 Neibolt Street was likely inspired by more than one location, but we stumbled onto a likely candidate very close to where the original Derry (Bangor) Rail yards were. This house is demolished now, but it sure fits the bill.
The corner of Jackson & Witcham in Derry, where poor Georgie gets his arm ripped off by Pennywise.
Jackson is a very real street, and Witcham Street was inspired by Union Street in Bangor.
The Derry Standpipe exists exactly as described as the Thomas Hill Standpipe. We visited it, and climbed the creepy stairs to the top.
Did you know that the bench and bird bath where Stan Uris watched birds is real and is right by the Standpipe?
The Barrens is real, and exactly as you would imagine it.
Fun fact: When Graveyard Shift was filmed here, thousands of rats procured for filming escaped here and were never captured.
We visited the Derry (Bangor) Library and found some interesting passages inside.
Stand By Me
Railway trestles over rivers in Maine are common, and the inspiration for the trestle in Stand by Me was likely from multiple places, but we found a very likely candidate in Norridgewock that fit the bill exactly.
Sweetbriar Rose Diner
The Sweetbriar Rose diner in Chester Mills (Under the Dome) was inspired by Rosie's Lovell Village Store at 234 Main Street in Lovell, ME. We stopped there for a coffee, but unfortunately Rosie's closed March 28th 2021.
As a young struggling writer, newly married, King lived with his wife Tabitha in a trailer home in Hermon. This is where he wrote Carrie on a portable typewriter in the trailer laundry room. They didn't even have a phone, so found out via telegram from his publisher that Carrie was going to be published - his first big break.
Map is currently under construction.
Much more coming soon, including photos, video and location information.
We are currently building Derry in HO Scale – follow our Instagram HERE for updates!
Please note that all photos and videos on this site are copyright property of StephenKingsMaine.com and are not to be used without permission.
Many thanks to Stu Tinker of SK Tours in Bangor for spending a couple of days with us, putting up with our obsession, and taking us to many of the locations in and around Bangor.
Without his kind help this site would not be possible.