Happyland Vancouver

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Happyland Vancouver

Postby Corkscrew » Wed Oct 22, 2008 9:12 pm

I saw Happyland mentioned in another topic, so I decided to start a thread about it. For a while now, I've been trying to find information and pictures about Happyland. So far, I've only been able to find two sites with info and pictures (Closed Canadian Parks and Coasters of the Pacific Northwest).

For those of you who don't know, Happyland was located near the current spot of Playland in Hastings, Vancouver. It's most popular attractions were the Giant Dipper and Shoot the Chutes.

The Giant Dipper was a large wooden coaster built by Frank Prior and Frederick Church. In a newspaper article, it was reported that it had a 59 foot drop and speeds of 40 mph, but the stats do not quite work out. The drop of the ride could have been as high as 90 feet or more and speeds as high as 58 mph. At this point, I'm not quite sure what the stats were. Anyways, the ride was demolished in 1948 as it was deemed unsafe due to neglect during the great depression. The Hastings racetrack wanted to expand, which was also, in part, repsonsible for the demolition.

Shoot the Chutes was very popular among thrill seekers, and also very popular on hot days. Happyland also had a kiddie wooden coaster called the Baby Dipper. The Baby Dipper was torn down in 1944, but Shoot the Chutes lasted until the parks closure in 1957.

Happyland closed in 1957 as the owners wanted to move the park. This resulted in the park being taken down. Playland opened up the next year right beside the former Happyland location. Many of Happyland's rides were transfered to Playland, which is essentially the "new" Happyland.

A peice of Happyland still lives on at the Puyallup Fair, where the Giant Dipper trains are in use on Coaster Thrill Ride.

So, discuss Happyland here and post any info/pictures you can find, provided it's not from the two websites I mentioned. What would really be helpful is a picture of the Bumper Cars (or Skooters as they may have been called) as my grandma has fond memories of it.

Thanks in advance if you guys can help me find out some more info about Happyland. To finish this off, here's a few pictures.

Giant Dipper

Shoot the Chutes

Baby Dipper


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Postby the ghost » Sat Oct 25, 2008 11:38 pm

That woodie is pretty impressive.

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Postby gordb » Sun Aug 30, 2009 11:00 pm

just ran across this site.I know where you can get all the info on happyland.My mother lived right under the big dipper when she was growing up.My grandfather was the man who ran happyland.both she and my uncle could probably fill in a few holes....

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Postby Crazy_Behemoth_Lady_Jess » Sun Aug 30, 2009 11:53 pm

I found this picture of Happyland. Giant Dipper quite resembles "Coaster". I wonder if the layouts were based on one another.
happyland old sign.jpg
Best: | 1. Medusa (SFDK) | 2. Coaster (Playland) | 3. Behemoth (CW) | 4. Giant Dipper (SCBB) | 5. Titan (SFOT) Worst: | 1. Grizzly (CGA) | 2. Flight Deck (CW) | 3. Corkscrew (Playland) | 4. Dragon Fire (CW) | 5. Rainbow Chaser (Fun Forest)
- Rides don't hurt people, people do. (although some exceptions)

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