Did You Know Dirty Dancing Wasn’t Really Filmed at New York Resort
Dirty Dancing celebrates its 35 anniversary on August 21, 2022. Did you know it wasn't actually filmed at a resort in New York?
Summer of 1963
It was the summer of 1963. The summer Baby and her family went to Kellerman's, a resort in the Catskill Mountains. The actual resort you see in Dirty Dancing wasn't in New York at all despite the New York State Thruway sign you see them driving by.
Grossinger's in Catskills
Grossinger's Catskill Resort in Liberty, New York was simply the inspiration for Kellerman's. It closed a year before the film was even released. Cabins were torn down in the mid-2000s and a recent fire destroyed the rest.
The real Kellerman's is in Mountain Lake, Virginia where they filmed scenes from the hotel, dining room, the Houseman family cabins, and Penny crying in the kitchen. The Mountain Lake Lodge has been a popular vacation spot for Dirty Dancing fans for years.
You Can Hurt Me But Don't Kill Me
The famous water lift also took place in Virginia...in October. Jennifer Grey, who played Baby, described it as 'horrifically' cold. Hey, it could have been worse. The scene could have been filmed in New York in October. Now THAT'S cold!
I Carried a Watermelon
The interior dancing where Baby learned to hold the frame, the famous watermelon scene, and practicing on the signature stairs, were all filmed at a former Boy Scout Camp in Lake Lure, North Carolina. It's now a private residential community known as Firefly Cove.
It's All About Balance
It was so hot during filming in North Carolina, that 10 people passed out within 25 minutes of shooting. Patrick Swayze was even taken to the hospital after repeatedly falling off the log during the balancing scene. He injured his knee so badly that he had to have fluid drained from the swelling.
Nobody Puts Baby in a Corner
The famous lift at the end of the movie was filmed in the ballroom of the Lake Lure Inn not a resort in the Catskills or Kellerman's in Virginia.
Despite most of the scenes being filmed in Virginia and North Carolina, there were a few New York references to make viewers believe it was in New York. Check out the beer Patrick Swayze is drinking.
My Kind of Dancing
Filming for Dirty Dancing began on September 5, 1986, and lasted only 43 days. The movie premiered at the Cannes Film Festival on May 12, 1987, and was released on August 21, 1987. It brought in more than $214 million and was the first film to sell more than a million home videos. It was also the movie that made Patrick Swayze a superstar.