Shark fans are flocking to Martha's Vineyard this weekend for Jawsfest. The four day festival from August 9-12 is drawing in fans of the 1975 Steven Spielberg film from all over the country to the island where the movie was filmed.
When the movie hit theaters crowds of people were drawn to Martha's Vineyard as it was the film site of the fictional Amity Island of the movie "Jaws." Martha's Vineyard became a huge tourist destination as tourism rates tripled. Now the tourist population ranges from 75,000 to 130,000 people during the summer, according to Reuters.
Martha's Vineyard owes a lot of credit to the film for boosting its tourism, which is why they're hosting JawsFest: The Tribute.
The four-day festival will include Jaws-related activities including trivia, a tour, meet and greets with shark experts and movie cast members, autographs, documentaries about the making of the movie and much more. About 5,000 to 10,000 people are expected to attend.
"The response has been tremendous with people coming in from as far as Australia for the event," event director Susan Sigel Goldsmith said, as quoted by TODAY.com. "With the advent of social networking, the connection to fans is much stronger - Universal Studios' "Jaws" movie Facebook page has more than 815,000 fans, and our own page has tremendous activity as well. We have received calls, e-mails and letter from fans consistently since 2005."
Fans will get to hear the stories of cast members and other fans that bring photos and memorabilia relating to the film to the festival.
"This event is for the fan and we appreciate all the direct participation we have received from them," Goldsmith told TODAY. "With the recent passing of ['Jaws'producer] Richard Zanuck, we are reminded that we don't have a lot of time left to hear these stories firsthand from those involved with the making of 'Jaws.' Personally, I can't wait to live that experience just one more time."
Visitors will have a chance to buy plenty of JawsFest souvenirs. The prices of festival access varies. To have access to all events, fans can purchase a VIP all access bracelet for $295. A general access pass is $55 for four days or $35 for three days. Some special event tickets to the Living Jaws panel discussions can be purchased individuals for around $30. Children under 13 with an adult have free access to some of the events.
For a schedule of all JawsFest: The Tribute events and pricing information, click here.