Five friends have been taking the same vacation photo for 35 years

Everyone takes a group photo or family photo on vacation. Some people do this in a special way, but these 5 friends did something particularly special.

Five best friends from California graduated in 1982. When they had their diploma, they decided to go on holiday together.

They went to the west coast of the United States to Lake Copco in California, which was the best vacation spot for the 19-year-olds.

They then decided to take a group photo and record their friendship, this is the photo at the beginning of this article.

What they would do 35 years later, they did not expect when they took the photo, says John Molony in a great interview, which can be seen at the end of the article.

The five young men got to know each other at a young age in the 1970s when they were in high school together.

After high school, it is difficult for many groups of friends to keep in touch, but apparently, this group of friends had no problem with that.

Five years later in 1987, they decided to go on holiday to the same place again.

Photo 1987

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Source: Youtube

That is how the idea of copying the photo from 1982 was born: Every 5 years, they would appear in the same order, on the same bench and with the same pose and the same tough look.

The men have been doing this for 35 years now, and by now they have taken 8 almost identical pictures. “I felt that this could be a fun tradition,” said one of the three “Johns.” “But I never thought we would still do it after thirty-five years.”

They called it “The Five Year Photo Project” and meanwhile the 8th photo of the series has been made in 2017.

They are very happy with the latest photo, which is the most similar to the original until now.

Not only do they commit to taking a vacation photo every 5 years, but they also make sure that every photo remains as faithful as possible to the original, to the clothing they wore until the way they put their hands.

Photo 1992

Vakantiefoto 1992
Source: Youtube

The men are always sitting in the same order, from left to right, John Wardlaw, Mark Rumer, Dallas Burney, John Molony, and John Dickson.

In this photo, all the men wore t-shirts for the first time because it was very cold.

“We took the rather strange photo in 1982. At the time, it was not intended that we still would be doing this 35 years later.” They were the least satisfied with this photo since the photo no longer looks exactly like the first one, so they tried to make the next one as identical as possible.

Photo 1997

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Source: Youtube

Meanwhile, the men are over 55 years old, when you go through all the photos, you will see the beauty of aging. You can see them change on every photo, by some gray hairs and wrinkles begin to appear.

Over the years they received a lot of questions about what is inside the jar. Later they told that there is a cockroach, a photo of Robert Young (to keep the cockroach company) and a butterscotch sweet (food for the cockroach) inside the jar.

Photo 2002

Vakantiefoto 2002
Source: Youtube

This year they put extra emphasis on the jar as a joke by using a huge one.

The man in the middle and the man on the right kept the same shirt for more than 25 years so they could use them on future photo’s when in 1997 they released it was going to be a tradition.

Photo 2007

Vakantiefoto 2007
Source: Youtube

This year they have done their best to find the original jar, so that they will remain more authentic in all future images.

According to the men themselves, they see the biggest age differences between this photo and the next one.

They said that from now on the aging will become visible. There is nothing better than aging with such amazing friends, they said.

Photo 2012

Vakantiefoto 2012
Source: Youtube

The next photo is the most recent one from 2017 and for that photo 3 of them did something really special, which they didn’t do since 1987.

Because since 1992 they have been wearing shirts on every photo, but now they did the photo without shirts. 

Photo 2017

Vakantiefoto 2017
Source: Youtube

They also looked up the original photo of Robert Young and put it in the jar together with the cockroach.

Photo at the interview

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Source: Youtube

The internet was shocked when they only saw four of the five men and feared something bad had happened to the man in the middle. Don’t be shocked, because luckily he had a good reason to be absent, because he was on his honeymoon. In the following video, his friends say that they miss him and think it is a pity that he could not be with them.

See the interview here about the awesome tradition and friendship: