A cutout of Red played by Morgan Freeman is in the room where the parole board scene was filmed for “The Shawshank Redemption.” CONNIE POST/STAFF
Photo: Connie Post
Photo: Connie Post

WORTH THE DRIVE: Celebrate ‘Shawshank Redemption’ 25 years later with cast and fans

It’s hard to believe, but it’s been 25 years since cult-classic “The Shawshank Redemption” was released.

The film was shot in its entirety just a short drive away in Mansfield at the Ohio Reformatory.

This August 16-18, travelers are encouraged to join cast members and other Shawshank die-hards in Mansfield to immerse themselves in the film’s iconic characters, sets and history.

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Visitors can get a glimpse of life behind bars in the West Tower at the Ohio State Reformatory Historic Site. CONNIE POST/STAFF
Photo: Connie Post



Many actors from the film will be in attendance too, offering visitors the chance to meet their favorite Shawshank characters in person.

To date, Bob Gunton (Warden Norton), William Sadler (Heywood), Mark Rolston (Bogs), Frank Medrano (Fat Ass), Alfonso Freeman (Red’s Mugshot and a Fresh Fish Guy), Scott Mann (Glenn Quentin), Renee Blaine (Linda Dufresne) and Claire Slemmer (Bank Teller) will be on hand to meet fans, according to a news release from event organizers. Additional guests, events and features are being added as details are finalized.

Travelers are encouraged to book travel now, but follow @ShawshankTrail social media for updates. 

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Layers upon layers of peeling paint reveal a glimpse of how the West Tower at the Ohio State Reformatory looked between 1895 and 1990, when more than 155,000 men did time. Visitors can peer into the small jail cells, which were large enough to accommodate a twin-size bed, toilet and small sink. CONNIE POST/STAFF


“The Shawshank Redemption” anniversary will be celebrated with more than a dozen original film sites in and around Mansfield hosting tours and events throughout the entire weekend.

The Ohio State Reformatory was featured in the film as Shawshank State Prison. Tours will take visitors inside Warden Norton’s office to Andy’s escape tunnel — and all points in between. 

Visitors are invited to travel the full, self-guided Shawshank Trail driving tour as they visit even more Shawshank filming sites, including: 

• Bissman Building (Brewer Hotel and Portland Daily Bugle) 

• Renaissance Theatre (Premiere of Shawshank Redemption) 

• The Shawshank Oak Tree Field (the tree was toppled by high winds in 2016) 

• Pugh Cabin at Malabar Farm (Opening scene) 

• Crosby Advisory Group LLC (Maine National Bank) 

• Revivals 2 Thrift Store (Trailways Bus Station) 

• Wyandot County Courthouse (Andy's Trial) 

• Shawshank Woodshop (Prison Workshop) 

• Carrousel Antiques (Pawn Shop Window) 

• Snyder & Hagerman Roads in Butler, OH (Road to Buxton) 

• Red's Bus Ride on Rt. 95 in Butler, OH (Bus to Fort Hancock, TX) 

• Brooks' Bench (Waiting for Jake) 

• KV Market (Food-Way) 

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A cutout of Red played by Morgan Freeman is in the room where the parole board scene was filmed for "The Shawshank Redemption." CONNIE POST/STAFF

On Friday night, Aug. 16, the film will be shown at the historic Renaissance Theatre, where the movie premiered in 1994.

On Saturday afternoon, Aug. 17, actors will be available for autographs at the Ohio State Reformatory, followed by a cocktail party.

The 5th annual Shawshank Hustle 7k family fun race also takes place on Saturday. This race features a route with filming sites, T-shirt, custom medal, food, music and more. Registration for the race is open. Some events will require tickets, and special anniversary souvenirs will be available for purchase to commemorate the exciting anniversary. 

Complete visitor information is available at DestinationMansfield.com or (800) 642-8282.

The Ohio State Reformatory Historic Site in Mansfield is the largest castle-like building in all of Ohio. CONNIE POST/STAFF
Photo: Connie Post