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Inside the abandoned air base that inspired ‘Stranger Things’

“Stranger Things” fans know that all the interdimensional problems that have befallen our friends in Hawkins, Indiana are due to the secret government facility known as Hawkins Lab.

But did you know that Netflix’s “Stranger Things” was originally called “Montauk,” named after the real New York City that is at the center of several conspiracy theories?

Since its debut in 2016, “Stranger Things” has become a phenomenon, generating millions of dollars in merchandise, novels and comics, stage adaptations, mobile games, tabletop games, and much more. It’s one of Netflix’s biggest franchises.

Camp Hero, formerly known as Montauk Air Force Station, has been plagued by conspiracy theories since the publication of the book “The Montauk Project: Experiments in Time,” written by Preston Nichols, in 1992. Its unsubstantiated claims included that base researchers had repressed the memories of employees who had been subjected to experiments throughout the 1970s and 1980s.

Today, it is possible to visit Camp Hero, which opened to the public as a state park in 2002. As someone who has been to Montauk dozens of times but never to Camp Hero – and in as someone in the process of opting out of “Stranger Things” in the meantime. a release date for season five – I jumped at the chance to visit the base, which is now abandoned.

I came away from my visit last summer understanding where the Duffer brothers, who created “Stranger Things,” got their inspiration. Camp Hero would definitely be on my list of scariest places I’ve visited.

Look inside the park, from its magnificent ocean views to the mysterious 90-foot radar tower that still stands today.


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