While we’re all excited about stuffing our faces this Thursday, those of us nostalgic for the good ol’ days of plopping ourselves in front of the TV to watch ABC Family every day at 2 p.m. Pacific know the real feast begins the day after Thanksgiving, when Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life hits Netflix. Four full episodes will be released Friday, Nov. 25, and will journey through fall, winter, spring, and summer, giving us glimpses into Rory and Lorelai’s life since the show went dormant nine years ago—plus what’s to come.
The official trailer shows the duo spitting wits as fast as ever. Scenes tease of the girls getting cheeky at Friday dinner, Luke furiously trying to argue whatever nonsense conversation, and, of course, a stroll through the town center, coffees in hand, the gazebo fading into the background.
Any fan will admit dreams of walking through Stars Hollow, quaint, fictional hometown of the Gilmore Girls and source of the series’ drama. Weeks ago, 200 coffee shops around the country celebrated Luke’s Diner Day, where they adopted the classic Luke’s logo and served free coffee to fans in anticipation of the show’s revival.
It’s one thing to grab coffee from Luke’s, and another entirely to stroll through the town of Stars Hollow—dipping into Al’s Pancake World for Chinese food, getting shooed out of Kim’s Antiques by Mrs. Kim, or being stuck at the town’s single stop light.
We’re here to help you make the leap between total imagination and actual experience, with a reimagining of Corvallis—set to Stars Hollow.
While Stars Hollow is cast in the rural Northeast, Corvallis rests in the Pacific Northwest. Our fall colors strive to rival that of the Northeast’s, but if you set aerial views of the two towns side by side, the differences are minimal. Remove the Willamette River, downsize the total area, add a touch more red to the trees, and you can practically see Lorelai’s orange jeep driving down the streets. The clock towers mirror each other, and if you take a closer look, you’ll notice the respective town gazebos could pass as twins.
On any given Thursday in Stars Hollow you’ll find locals meandering towards Ms. Patti’s Dance Studio for the town hall meetings. Ever been to a Corvallis City Council meeting? Though Mayor Traber conducts a bit more bureaucratically than Taylor Doose, let’s not forget that at a recent council meeting, a group dubbed “The Raging Grannies” performed a song in protest of the Dakota Access Pipeline. National scale, and far more critical, but is it that difficult to imagine two competing troubadours using the city council meeting to vie for the same chunk of sidewalk in Corvallis?
Of course Stars Hollow wouldn’t be the same without its motley crew of businesses sprinkled around the three main roads. Stars Hollow Books, a regularly frequented place by Miss Rory Gilmore sizes up to our Browser’s Bookstore. With jam-packed shelves, stacks on the floor, and an owner who knows where every single book is hidden, the two show stark similarities.
Stop into the Beekman Place Antique Mall, and try to weave your way through nooks and crannies without touching anything, all while envisioning Mrs. Kim chasing you around, barking prices.
Then we have the Black, White, and Read Shop in Stars Hollow, book store by day and movie theater by night. The Darkside Cinema in Corvallis bears a resemblance, with its cheap prices for movies you won’t be able to catch anywhere else. The classic red theater seats are just the icing on the cake of comparison.
Corvallis also has its fair share of strange events for the locals, something Stars Hollow is champion of. The “Quilts in the Garden” tour of almost 300 quilts gives the Stars Hollow “Old Muddy River Bridge Knit-athon” a run for its money. I mean, is there really a better way to raise money for a bridge than to have the whole town knit something? Other quintessential Gilmore Girls events, like the Snowman Building Contest, the Summer Madness Festival, and the Festival of Living Art would fit right in with the Benton County community.
Last but not least, a tribute to that one omnipresent character, singing or dancing on street corners, giving everyday conversations their own soundtrack. In Gilmore Girls this would be the town troubadour, also known as Grant Lee Phillips, who appears in the show in the most unlikely of times. In Corvallis, this beloved character would be none other than Dancing Mike, a man Corvallis would not be the same without.
Gilmore Girls premiers on Netflix on Friday, Nov. 25. Know a Corvallis Kirk, a Luke, or a Paris? Cast a Corvallisite for the role by tagging us on Instagram or Facebook with #CorvallisAdvocate.
By Regina Pieracci