Just some good ol’ boys
Characters from the popular 1970s television show, “The Dukes of Hazzard,” were back in action during the Northeast Ohio Dukes Hazzard County Stunt Show at the Washington County Fair Monday night.
“Bo” and “Luke Duke,” driving “General Lee, the cousins’ infamous orange-and-black 1969 Dodge Charger, gave Boss Hogg and Hazzard County law enforcement the chase of their lives during the two-hour event that included several airborne vehicles crashing onto the track at the fairgrounds grandstand.
“We’ve been watching the television series since it came out in the 1970s-and I still watch it. I really like Daisy Duke,” said Shawn Thomas, 45, of Marietta, who attended Monday’s show.
Tara Hopkins, 42, also of Marietta, agreed.
“I just always liked the Duke boys,” she said.
Stephanie Henderhan of Marietta watched the show with her husband.
“We grew up with the Dukes on TV,” she said. “But this is the first time we’ve seen the stunt show.”
Matt Miller and Bill Bartholomew, both of Cortland, have been photo- and video-graphing the stunt show since it began in 2007.
“We started off just doing jump stunts with the General Lee, and later we wrote a script to make the show like an episode of the television series,” Miller said. “We do the show all over Ohio. Last year we did four shows, and this year we’re doing two.”
Bartholomew said each year’s show takes three to four months to prepare.
“But the crowds always love it,” he said. “And it’s always a good, clean family show.”
The Hazzard County Stunt Show was basically founded by Raymond Kohn, one of the show’s main stunt drivers who wows the crowd with a grand finale jump over several cars in the General Lee.
“It takes a whole crew of about 25 to 30 people to put on this show,” he said. “That includes actors, stunt men, and a track crew.”
Kohn was honest when asked how it feels to go barreling through the air in a two-ton vehicle.
“It’s very scary,” he said. “For a while I feel weightless, but then it’s like someone strapped me into a kitchen chair and pushed me out the window.”
Monday was his 17th jump in the General Lee.
Miller noted a lot of preparation goes into every show, and safety for the drivers is top priority.
“The hair still stands up on the back of my neck during these stunts,” he said.