A. In Episode
1, of Season 6, "Those Kinds of Things".
Little Harrison is growing up, and Dexter is forced to start looking for a good preschool for his son.
Angel suggests this one, a Catholic preschool (and a fast track to better schools).
& Debra bring Harrison there, but when the nun asks Dexter about his
religious beliefs, he tells her he doesn't believe in anything. That
doesn't make a good impression on the nun, and Dexter seems put off by
the religious symbols at the school.
Back at his car, he modifies that and tells Debra that he believes in a set of rules so that he doesn't get in trouble.
She tells him that sounds like something for a puppy, and that it sounds cold and empty.
Later, he realizes that even though he doesn't need any religious beliefs, his son might (especially since Dexter doesn't want him to grow up like his father - and his Dark Passenger).
So, in a
latter scene, Dexter returns to the preschool and apologizes to the nun,
telling her that he is ignorant about religion, but wants the best for
his son. She seems impressed that he made the effort, and says she
will try to get him into the school.
What is it actually in real life?
A. A church preschool. But not a Catholic one, and nowhere near Miami.
Where can I find it in real life?
A. The Grand & 8th street
signs that you see in front of the preschool are fake. So is the
blue and white sign they added near the gate.
This scene was actually shot at
the northwest corner of Termino & 3rd Street. (In fact, if you look
closely at one of the latter shots, you can see a Termino sign in the
It's really the preschool of the Belmont Heights United Methodist Church, at 317 Termino Avenue, in Long Beach, CA.
In most main shots of the exterior, the camera is looking north, at the south side the preschool on 3rd Street (where the playground equipment is). Dexter parks his car on the north side of 3rd St.
The final scene, though, shows the school's east side, and Dexter parks then on the west side of Termino.
This location is about mid-way between the high school where they filmed Dexter's high school reunion, and the beach
where they filmed the scenes of the snakes in the dead guy - both from the same episode (and more examples of Dexter's tendency to "cluster shoot").
Fan Susan Loomis was at the filming, andused her camera's phone
toshoot the photos below, in June 2011:
This is a blow-up of part of another photo by Susan, showing Dexter kneeling next to Harrison.
And here's her shot of the fake "Our Lady of the Gulf" sign that they put up:
And if that's not enough for you, here's a brief videoshe shot as well,
of Dex walking Harrison into the school. Click here.
However, later in the season, in Episode 9
("Get Gellar"), they revisit the preschool for a short scene (in which
Dexter proudly watches as Harrison is handing out cookies to the other
kids) For that scene, they faked the preschool at the studio.
Episode 9 scene was shot in the southeast corner of the Sunset-Gower
studio (where Dexter is filmed), which is a studio parking lot.
The camera is looking east, towards Gordon Street. They painted a
blue mural on the (normally) white block wall that surrounds the studio,
and added a flowering vine to the chain link fence that tops that
wall. Then all they had to do was add a strip of grass, some
playground equipment, a few picnic tables and two nuns.
Voila! Instant preschool.
Q. How the heck did you figure out where it was?
A. In previous seasons, I've
usually had to hunt down the locations after viewing the episodes,
using clues from the various scenes. By the 6th season, though,
I'd developed a small group of fans, spies & tipsters who kept an
eye out for Dexter filming in their neighborhoods, and would let me know
in advance when something was about to film there.
Between those reports, my own personal reconnaissance around town, and a
few new resources I discovered, by the time the first episode aired, I
already knew most (but not all) of the filming locations, and only
needed to watch the episodes and match up the scenes with the correct
This group of helpful fans includes Kerry, Rick, Ellen, Susan, Joel, Julie, Geoff,Jeff, and others. My thanks to all of them.. My thanks to all of them.
This time, fan Susan Loomis was
on the scene for part of the filming, and sent me the photos you see
above. She also reported seeing Debra (Jennifer Carpenter) on the
scene, hiding behind a large hat. Thanks, Susan!
( As for the later, Episode 9 scene, I knew that the block wall at the studio was topped with chain-link fence, so that was the first place I checked. I
was able to match a large canary island pine tree visible on the other
side of the studio wall, along with a tall palm tree trunk growing right
next to that canary pine, plus the square roof of the apartment house
north of those trees.)