Finding 'Old Red Eye' in Sussex County Nov 25, 2014 13:39:41 GMT -5
Post by Graveyardbride on Nov 25, 2014 13:39:41 GMT -5
‘Finding Bigfoot’ in Sussex County moved to January
PARSIPPANY, N.J. – The result of the effort to find Bigfoot in Sussex County is scheduled to air in January. The crew from Finding Bigfoot was here this summer to scour the forests of Northwest New Jersey in search of what they’re always looking for – Sasquatch. The result of that search is a sixth-season episode called “Bobo, Bobcat and the Big Red Eye” that showcases last June’s town hall at the Fountain House in Fredon as well as the week-long “squatch” investigations the team conducted afterwards.
In Sussex County, the Finding Bigfoot team used a secret weapon: comedian and bigfoot enthusiast Bobcat Goldthwait, according to Discovery Press Web. Goldthwait used his iconic yell to help attract “Big Red Eye,” a nickname for Sasquatches in Northwest New Jersey. “We were particularly impressed by northern New Jersey,” said Matt Moneymaker, team leader and president of the Bigfoot Field Researchers Organization (BFRO), a national network of hundreds of investigators who keep an ever-growing database of evidence of Sasquatches, including sightings, wood knocks, howls, and footprints. Most remarkable for the team, which has explored nearly every state, was the number of bears in northern New Jersey,” Moneymaker said. “We encountered more bears in New Jersey than we have ever encountered anywhere, including Alaska and Canada.”
According to Moneymaker, the New Jersey chapter of the BFRO is the fastest growing one. He explained membership is only by invitation after a candidate has attended one BFRO expedition. “The first official BFRO expedition in New Jersey was organized in early 2014,” he said. “That brought in several new members who are now working together to investigate sightings throughout the state.”
The other three Finding Bigfoot team members are Cliff Barackman and James “Bobo” Fay, both researchers, and Ranae Holland, a skeptical scientist. Together, they have searched 37 states and seven countries for a Sasquatch, or “Squatch,” a term used to describe an 8- to 10-foot bipedal hominid cryptid – an animal whose existence is scientifically unproven.
Each of the team’s visits starts with a town hall-style meeting to collect local stories of Sasquatch sightings. It then maps the sightings and chooses the hot spots where team members conduct their own investigations. The Finding Bigfoot team’s week in Sussex County marked its second visit to the Garden State. In “South Jersey Sasquatch,” which aired in the fourth season, the team searched to no avail in the Pine Barrens, 1.1 million acres of woods spanning seven counties in the southern part of the state. In that episode, the team questioned whether some reports of the famed Jersey Devil, a winged creature, actually could have been Sasquatch.
‘Old Red Eye.’ But Northwest Jersey has its own history of the big, hairy creature, known for its glowing eyes, foul stench and distinctive gait. Some reports of “Old Red Eye,” as it’s known in Northwest New Jersey, are passed down orally from old Lenape (len-AH-pay), or Delaware Indian, accounts. The region spanning rural Sussex and Warren counties is replete with wilderness areas, including High Point State Park, Stokes State Forest, and Jenny Jump State Forest. Indeed the Appalachian Trail cuts through the northwest corner of New Jersey, too. Some local squatchers have speculated the number of sightings in the region may be attributed to the creatures following the trail.
In the past 50 years alone, 207 Sasquatch reports have been made in New Jersey, according to William Taylor, author of Bigfoot in the New Jersey ‘Burbs. A total of 107 were in the northern part of the state, the most famous being the sighting of an 8-foot, 400-pound Sasquatch in the spring of 1977 by the Sites family farm on Wolfpit Road in Wantage, located east of Montague and west of Vernon on Sussex County’s northern border. According to Barbara Sites, quoted in a Daily Record clip from that era, the creature, with luminous red eyes, killed the family’s rabbits and, with one swipe, threw their 70-pound dog 20 feet. Reportedly, the family fired on the animal, which walked away.
Sixty at Town Hall. Though the arrival of the Finding Bigfoot team was not made public in Sussex County, as is its practice, word circulated through the bigfoot community. Some 60 people gathered at The Fountain House on Route 94, a tavern dating to 1860, for the June 21 taping. They listened to stories of community members who reported sightings as far back as the early 70s and as recently as this past June, particularly in the northern reaches of the county.
Fourteen people came forward with stories, 13 of them firsthand sightings and one with a cast of an alleged Sasquatch footprint he had made. “These are the best stories we’ve had in years,” said an enthusiastic Fay, who wore a “Keep It Squatchy” cap, as the town hall drew to a close. “This is Jersey, baby!” yelled back someone from the audience. No specifics on any story shared by the locals will be made public until the show airs.
Finding Bigfoot enjoyed a viewership of 1.6 million for the debut of its second season and 1.3 million for the debut of its fourth, according to Discovery Press Web. While popular, the show has taken its knocks. Online, some viewers have taken to calling it “(Not) Finding Bigfoot” because the team has not yet successfully caught up with one of the beasts.
The show shot in Sussex County was originally due to air in November, but the channel announced Saturday it was moving it to January.
Source: Lorraine Ash, The Parsippany Daily Record, November 22, 2014.