About Frazier Park
Frazier Park is a named community in Southwest Kern County just over the shared border with Los Angeles County. Frazier Park is not chartered as a city or a town, and its local government is the County Board of Supervisors in Bakersfield 45 miles to the North. The 2020 census established the population at just over 3,100 residents over five square miles.
This mountain community was first identified in 1854 as the area where lumber was being cut for the building of Fort Tejon. Frazier Park is one of four other communities in Cuddy Canyon within the San Emigdio Mountains. For a point of reference, Frazier Park is west of I-5 between Bakersfield and Santa Clarita.
The residents of this community have tried to establish a town council and a mayor at the request of the County Supervisor. It was the County’s intent for these appointed positions to act in an advisory role to aid in the governance of the five unincorporated mountain communities. From 2009-2020, there have been many failed attempts to organize such a council.
The dysfunction occurred in the personalities of the appointees and not in the vision or the goals for southwest Kern County. Frazier Park is more familiar to the country than is known. This mountain community served as the film set for The Waltons from 1972-1981, and for the special series after the show’s formal cancellation. Filming in Frazier Park will be easy no matter what you are shooting.
Filming Options in Frazier Park
The filming options in Frazier Park are mostly homes or mountain cabins, together with local café-type businesses. There are a few outdoor venues in the valley. The filming locations will need to be specific to the genre and the setting of the subject.
The goal of any filming project, no matter the size or budget, is the connection to the target audience. The set and scenery need to be conducive to the project, and the public needs to relate to the brand. It is important for one source to begin working on the marketing in the pre-production stage and follow the process through the post.
The food service brought to a film set needs to be vetted to be sure the staff can handle any changes in the schedule and serving detail. Catering is one ancillary service where first impressions will set the tone of the production experience long after filming.
A film permit is required for all filming projects within the boundaries of Kern County. This includes locations owned by federal, state, and local governments, as well as within any special districts and private property. There may be additional permits needed for filming on federal and state properties.
Filming Companies in Frazier Park
In order to take full advantage of the tax credits offered to productions within the state, the hiring of local talent and labor will lend strength and merit to the application. Also, the local professionals in the film field can help you in many ways for your filming in Frazier Park.
- Scope Studios
This family-owned studio got its start in Bakersfield in 2008. Since then, the focus, delivery, and clientele have expanded to offer national-quality, creative services throughout the San Joaquin Valley. Scope Studios has the capabilities of seeing a film project through from concept to post and the delivery to the public.
- NV Catering
Since 2010, NV Catering has been providing catering services to business and corporate functions, intimate gatherings, and galas. This caterer can serve groups from 20 to 2,000 guests. The menus are planned around the expectations of the customer and the serving modes can be self-serve or by attendants.
- California Film Commission
The state of California offers tax credits to production companies for both feature and indie films, TV pilots and series, and film projects relocating to California from another state. The maximum incentive is a 25% tax credit off eligible production expenses, some of which may be transferrable. There are no budget caps, but there is a set budget minimum of $1 million.
Pros and Cons of Filming in Frazier Park
Filming in a small mountain community will certainly have its pros and cons, but this will depend upon the project in its entirety and upon the flexibility of the team. There should be no one aspect, positive or negative, that is mutually exclusive. The list of advantages and disadvantages below are only suggested topics for consideration.
If a film requires the setting within a small mountain community, then Frazier Park is the ideal location. For instance, this is where The Waltons was filmed. The buildings and homes are quaint, but spatial, and are fitting to the scenery.
- No competition
The chances of a competitor vying for the same film location are small. The community does not aggressively offer itself as a destination for production companies.
Because Frazier Park is at a higher elevation and away from the moderating effects of the Pacific Ocean, the heat of the summer months is cooler, but the winters are longer, colder, and wetter.
A corresponding disadvantage in filming in a rural community is the location of ancillary support services. Although the route to a film location can avoid the Los Angeles traffic by way of Bakersfield, there is a very good chance that the crew and services will be based in Los Angeles.
- High cost of everything
Being a southern California town, you should expect to pay more for just about anything you need. Be sure to pad your budget for extra expenditures.
- Location specific
The scenery of a small mountain community is not versatile or generic. It may take some creativity when filming outdoors if you do not want the scenery to look like a small town.
Famous Locations in Frazier Park
- Fort Tejon State Historical Park
Located in nearby Lebec, this historical park will educate visitors through a reenactment of the lives of soldiers and families inside the Fort in the 1850s. This Fort was established to protect both Indians and the white settlers in the Grapevine Canyon from raids of rival tribes. The demonstrations of living history are featured on the first Saturday of each month throughout the year.
- Gorman Motorsport Rentals
This rental company caters to motorsport enthusiasts wanting to ride on the groomed trails of the Hungry Valley State Park. Gorman is located inside of the 19,000-acre park and offers both motorcycles and ATVs for rent. The vehicles are brought to the riders at the trailhead and picked up at the end of the ride. This service is completely hassle-free for the riders.
- The Oasis on I-5
The Oasis is located between Los Angeles and Bakersfield off I-5 and within the Tejon Ranch Commerce Center. The development comprises 1,450 acres and is considered Southern California’s premier travel stop with dining, shopping, and lodging. The Oasis is aptly named within the undeveloped canyons North of Los Angeles.