HEYYY YOU GUYS!! “The Goonies” is one of my favorite movies, so on my two-week trip to Oregon earlier this year, I decided to take a special weekend trip to Astoria to say hello to the Goon Squad and see some of the settings where the movie was filmed.
Astoria, located in the northwest corner of Oregon, is a beautiful harbor town just across the bridge from Washington State. It is also the town where half of the scenes from the 1985 cult classic, “The Goonies” were filmed. Please note — do not go looking for the summer restaurant or the caves underneath the town. Those things do not exist. They were film sets. Again, One-Eyed Willie’s pirate ship is not buried underneath Astoria. I feel the need to make this disclaimer because while I am a movie buff who loves geek travel, I know there are people crazier than me out there who would try to go looking for it.
But there are some fantastic set locations and a great film museum that makes a trip to Astoria worthwhile for any fan of “The Goonies!”
This is the piece de resistance of the Goonies tour. You simply cannot go to Astoria without checking out the Oregon Film Museum.
First off, before you even walk inside, there is a memorable Goonies prop that you must stop and take pictures with. The Fratellis’ Jeep Cherokee getaway car is parked out front — bullet holes and all. They even have a box of Saltines in the passenger seat!
Mama Fratelli’s Saltines in the front seat
As you enter the museum, you may notice that it looks very similar to the opening scene of the movie. The OFM actually used to be the Astoria County Jail, or at least it was during the time the movie was filmed. It has since been turned into a museum paying tribute to films that were shot in the state of Oregon — although most of the museum is a tribute to “The Goonies.” It costs $6 to get in and will probably take you about 20 minutes to walk through, depending on how many pictures you want to snap.
As you walk in to the museum, you’ll recognize the first scene from the movie immediately, where Francis and Mama Fratelli bust Jake out of prison and escape in their Jeep Cherokee amidst a gunshot-initiated band of fire ineffectively surrounding the police station. Take a walk down the hall and you’ll continue to feel like you’re walking straight into the movie.
They even have the jail cell set up with the pipe and the sign that hung around his neck at the beginning of the movie.
There are three jail cells in the main hallway. The center cell is the one you can walk in with the pipe and sign. The first cell is filled with neat Goonies merchandise straight outta the 80s. The last cell is a tribute to Data! In this cell, you’ll find Data’s outfit, complete with all his gadgets including his “pinchers of power” and “slick shoes.”
Data and his gadgets!
Before you turn down the hallway where the prison cells are, you’ll notice a few familiar faces immediately to your left. Feel free to write a note and leave it for the Goonies, play the 6 Degrees of Corey Feldman game on the wall, and walk down the back of the jail (where Andy is in the picture below) to read about the history of the jail cell and infamous prisoners of Astoria. Sloth is also down there too!
Chillin’ with my crew
Erica love Sloth
Steph and I are not impressed
(Also, we miss Barb)
Other cool features of the museum include a 1980s Goonies video game that you can play for free as long as you want, and a movie set room with green screens where you can write, direct and star in sequences from famous films such as “The Shining.” Upon entering, the museum also provides you with a “Set Pass” that allows you to not only record your movie scenes, but also edit them on computer screens once you’re done. It’s a really cool, comprehensive movie-making process that is easy to use and fun for an afternoon.
Flavel House Museum
where Mr. Walsh works
Just across the street from the Oregon Film Museum, you’ll find the Flavel House Museum, which served as the Astoria Historical Museum in “The Goonies.” This building showed up for a brief second in the movie when the kids are biking through the town on their way to start their adventure. Cyndi Lauper’s classic song is playing and you know an amazing adventure is about to go down. I did not go inside the Flavel House Museum, but it’s a gorgeous house to take pictures of and it’s literally across the street from the OFM. You can’t miss it.
Image from the movie
Mike and Brand’s House (unofficial)
This is not an official spot for the Goonies tour anymore, but I’m putting it on this list to acknowledge its existence. Mike and Brand’s house, now privately owned, used to be open to the public. People would be able to walk up the driveway and take pictures in the yard (where Chunk did his Truffle Shuffle). The owner would even give walking tours of the house a couple times a year.
Unfortunately, last year, the owner decided to shut down the driveway to visitors entirely after the town infestation of the Goonies 30th anniversary brought with it some ill-mannered jerks who had to ruin it for all of us.
Although I can’t blame the owner. If I woke up to one too many Truffle Shuffles on my yard while I was trying to eat breakfast, I’d lose my patience too.
You can still get a good picture of the house from the street below, but this is as close as I dared to get:
Up in that attic lies the map to the buried treasure
There’s also a really cool coffee shop at the entrance to this neighborhood called Astoria Coffee Co. They serve cheap coffee, food and they have unique Goonies merchandise that you won’t find anywhere else available for sale!
And as a parting gift (I’ve been doing parting gifts a lot lately, but I guess I like to leave something personal as a last impression), here is the classic Goonies song written by Cyndi Lauper, “The Goonies R Good Enough,” which I may or may not have played about 100 times walking and driving through the streets of Astoria. Goonies never say die!