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5 friends pose for the same picture every 5 years for 30 years

Jul 27, 2012 By Abraham

In 1982, five guys at a cabin on Copco Lake in California posed for a picture. Nothing unusual about that…

They continued getting together there every year, and in 1987 they thought it would be be funny to recreate that old 1982 picture. Again, not terribly unusual…

Then 1992 came, and the guys were still friends and were still making their yearly trip to the lake. When they posed for the same pic for the third time, they knew a tradition had been born…





Will they meet again for the photo in 2017? John Dickson (far right) says…

We plan on doing this for the rest of our lives, no matter what — Up until there’s one guy just sitting in the same pose! Even then, maybe someone will take a picture of an empty bench for us.

Check out the guys’s site about these pics. Read the story on CNN.


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  1. Kelli says:

    I see a big difference from 1997 to 2002, and my age now is probably what they were in 1997. Sheesh, now I know what I have to look forward to. Great idea, though, and it’s awesome they’re able to stay committed to their friendship this way!

    1. Shawn Wheeler says:

      I notice how tan you were in the beginning and how white you became at the end. Must be caused by the same reason you keep your shirts on. lol

  2. Dede says:

    Now I want to get in my time maching to go back and do this with MY friends! (I wonder how much this tradition inspires them to keep in shape. They all look great! I love the year the guy went from grey to blond again.)

  3. Dan says:

    In a few more years, there won’t be much of a view. Those trees / bushes are starting to overgrow.

  4. Angelica Balchen says:

    Aaaw! That’s so sweet! I see they replaced the fence; glad they didn’t replace any of the guys…

  5. India Holden says:

    I love this story. It made me smile. I wish them another thirty years of picture-taking. Thank you for doing it and brightening my morning.

  6. J says:

    My mother and her four sisters have done this type of photograph for the last twenty years or so. When ever all five of them are at a family event, inevitable someone says “Sister photo time!”. Pretty cool stuff…

  7. ebbs says:

    the last guy on the left wore the same shirt three times. wonder if it really is the same shirt, he would have kept it for fifteen years. awesome.

  8. Rachel says:

    From 2002 to 2007 it looks like they lost weight.
    This is awesome, my friends and I are in our early twenties, I think we may have to start something like this.

  9. Me says:

    1997 to 2002 is the biggest difference. Makes you realize how quickly time flies and how we got to make the most of what the world offers to us and cherish every memory.

  10. Kazza says:

    Are the 2002 and 2007 pics the wrong way round – looks like they aged too much then miraculously got younnger again. They all look fab though – they have aged well in the 30 years.

  11. Chris says:

    The guy in the middle had the same shorts on for four pictures. What a champ. 20 years in one pair of shorts.

  12. Steffan says:

    My Dad and 2 his friends have been doing this every decade for about the last 50 years. They can’t do it on a yearly basis as of them lives in Australia now. But he is old 70+ year old man now and the 1st picture taken he is in his 20’s

      1. Nicole says:

        I just read the article and it was more interesting than I thought: “..Molony, known in the group as Belves, is pictured holding a Folgers Instant Coffee jar, which contained a cockroach the guys had decided to keep as a pet. They fed their new friend with a piece of butterscotch candy and kept it company with a photograph of Robert Young.”

  13. jason says:

    Now look carefully. Notice the wedding rings come and go. One chap got married and then “not married” in 5 years.

    Great idea – thanks for sharing ;p

  14. sara says:

    This story made me feel such conflicting feelings: joy for this tradition laced with sad yearnings for lost youth. Maybe it’s because these guys and I are relatively the same age … and seeing the years pass in the form of the photos applies to my life as well. I still feel 22 – like I was in 1982. I bet they do too!

  15. Tammy says:

    Cool. I think the guys should commit to keeping their shirts off… Funny how that desire to ‘show off’ quickly fades. This is a great study!

  16. Sanja Plavsic-Brandt says:

    BFF, guys :) that is wonderful ! and i wish you many, many more pictures like this, with all of you there. time passes so fast, it is only when we look back that we realize how fast 10, 20, 30 years pass…i just wish i could hear what you were talking about at that exact moment over the years :) well, i love it ! keep fit and hang in there…and see you in 3 years ;)

  17. elle says:

    love this, but I agree that leaving the shirts off would have left a pretty epic collection of photos…

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