Today is the grand re-opening of the Calico Mine Ride and Camp Snoopy at Knott’s Berry Farm! The Mine Ride and Camp Snoopy both just underwent massive refurbishments. The Mine Ride received new animatronics, lighting, sound, and effects. Camp Snoopy received 3 new rides, new theming on the Grand Sierra Railroad, a character meet-and-greet area, and the entire area was returned to its “High Sierra” roots. Media were invited on Thursday to check out all the new improvements, and I’m happy to report that everything turned out great! Check out our full report below for all the details...
We’re at Knott’s Berry Farm to check out the newly refurbished Calico Mine Ride and Camp Snoopy!
We started off the day in Camp Snoopy with breakfast in the Grizzly Creek Lodge.
Nom nom nom!
Knott’s went the whole nine yards with breakfast. Literally, I would say there were about nine yards of food.
After breakfast we headed to the Camp Snoopy Theatre for the Camp Snoopy Grand Opening Ceremony.
Lots of special guests participated in the ceremony. From left to right by row, there was Jason Soyster, Knott’s Communications Manager; Raffi Kaprelyan, Vice President and General Manager of Knott’s; Miller Oh, Buena Park Mayor; Darryl Knott, Great Grandson of Walter and Cordilia Knott; Craig Schulz, President of Creative Associates and son of Charles M. Schulz; and of course, the one and only Gertrude The Goose.
Lucy, Charlie Brown, and Linus then came on stage and did a cute skit to officially open Camp Snoopy.
Snoopy appeared with the “official camp flag.”
The flag was raised, confetti was thrown, and the brand new Camp Snoopy was officially opened! We’ll check out the area more later in the report, but next we headed straight to the Calico Mine Ride for its re-opening ceremony.
When we got to the Mine Ride there were many characters there to greet us.
A band played live music while the crowd filtered in.
A small stage was set up in front of the entrance with some “explosives” on it.
A full house of passholders, Club TPR members, and other invited guests showed up to see the re-opening ceremony.
Special guests on hand to open the ride were Jason Soyster, Knott’s Communications Manager; a representative for Assemblywoman Sharon Quirk-Silva; Raffi Kaprelyan, Vice President and General Manager of Knott’s; Garner Holt, owner of Garner Holt Productions; and Bill Butler, Creative Director at Garner Holt Producitons. Gertrude decided not to speak, but stood on Garner Holt’s head to get a better view of the ride and ceremony.
A mine train then pulled up carrying Clem Coldpepper, the miner who discovered the Calico Mine.
Clem walked down to the stage and talked to the crowd. Here he is showing off a gold nugget he pulled from the mine.
He then pushed the explosives lever, triggering several dynamite blasts on top of the mountain.
There was one final large explosion, and with that the Calico Mine Ride was officially re-opened!
We headed up to the station, noticing little details that were added around the mountain. Here’s a gold pan sitting in the water.
New cacti and succulents are planted all over the mountain.
The station got some TLC and looks nicely touched up.
New gates were installed in the boarding area.
The original cars were refurbished and look great! The logos are all hand painted on the cars.
Throughout the attraction there are over 50 new animatronic figures.
This shot, courtesy of Knott’s, shows the updated Glory Hole scene.
This was one of my favorite new characters. He warns you that any spark could cause an explosion in the mine - a bit of foreshadowing perhaps? (Photo credit: Knott's)
Characters at the start of the lift hill.
A new scene with bats was added along the lift hill.
The “Heaven Room” is dramatically improved. As you pull out of the lift hill the lights now slowly turn on, revealing the impressive room. The sound was also re-recorded and it sounds great!
This miner is excited to have found gold!
Don’t fall off the ladder!
Outside there are two new animatronic figures... can you spot them?
Here they are close up. Very cool!
With new smoke, lighting, and projection effects, the end scene is much better than it used to be!
The train pulling out of the mine. We survived!
Here’s a full POV of the refurbished Calico Mine Ride!
Here’s a picture of the train driving through one of Robb’s farts.
John Waite, former employee of Bud Hurlbut (the creator of the Mine Ride), gives the ride a big thumbs up.
Here’s a shot of Garner Holt standing in front of the attraction.
The Mine Ride renovation strikes that perfect mix of new and old that the Timber Mountain Log Ride renovation struck last year. The attraction has been modernized and freshened up, but has still retained all of its classic charm and feel. Everyone involved did an amazing job!
Spears grabbed a pickaxe and went to work in the mine looking for gold!
Knott’s summer shows start today as well. Here’s a quick look at some of their summer offerings.
Boom Town is a show that mixes circus acts with gold rush fever. The performers are all very talented!
They dance, twirl, and jump from high heights with no harnesses.
And they compete to find gold!
Over in the Charles M. Schulz Theatre, Snoopy Unleashed returns for a second year.
This ice show of course features Snoopy!
Lots of talented skaters...
More great costumes...
Impressive skating jumps...
And even some aerial silks!
The show is a ton of fun!
Snoopy says if you’re cool like he is, then you’ll go see it!
After the ice show we headed to lunch in The Boardwalk Ballroom.
As always, Knott’s had tons of amazing food.
And along with all the normal offerings they had plenty of vegan and gluten free options too. Go Knott’s!
We then headed over to Camp Snoopy.
There’s a new meet-and-greet area where you can meet the characters in front of cartoon backdrops.
I’m all up in Snoopy’s dog house eating his doggy treats.
Here’s Peppermint Patty hanging out with the TP girls. (Johanna from TPA and Spears from TPR)
Here’s Knott’s Haunt Maze Designer Daniel Miller getting some psychiatric help. Peppermint Patty says his mind it too demented and he can’t be helped. Oh well, I guess that means more sick and twisted Haunt mazes will be coming in the future!
We loved the meet-and-greet area! It’s such a better way to interact with and take pictures with the characters.
Next up, The Grand Sierra Railroad.
Peanuts theming was added along the ride, and a complete narration soundtrack is done by Linus.
This tumbleweed gag is so simple but so effective. It was our favorite addition to the ride.
Some of the new theming in the water underneath Silver Bullet.
You also pass by boysenberry plants on the train ride. It’s so great seeing boysenberries growing in the park!
Here’s a picture of the new Linus Launcher ride.
The second new ride is Charlie Brown’s Kite Flyer.
A new seating area was added in the middle of Camp Snoopy that seemed like a nice place for both adults and children to relax.
The new wood signs throughout the camp are gorgeous.
Pig Pen’s Mud Buggies is the third new ride, and my personal favorite. Your car bounces up and down as the ride spins.
Bouncy, bouncy, bouncy.
Everything in Camp Snoopy has been painted and re-themed to match the original High Sierra theme of the area. The entire area now feels more cohesive and appealing.
So that’s Camp Snoopy!
Thanks Knott’s for putting on this awesome event and for inviting us to attend... we had a great time! Knott’s has really been on a roll lately, and these new additions and changes are no different. The Mine Ride renovation brings the ride into the 21st century while preserving its historic look and feel, and the Camp Snoopy renovation creates a cohesive themed area with new things to see and do for all ages. We loved both projects, and highly recommend going to see them for yourself!
So what are you waiting for? The Calico Mine Ride and Camp Snoopy are now open at Knott’s! Go check them out!!!
Last edited by ILoveRides on Sat Jun 14, 2014 5:00 pm.
Pretty awesome! I love the character meet and greet area. Did they have something like that before? I don't remember that as a kid or even in the recent years. Way to go Knott's for really doing a great job at not destroying the family feel but still updating some classic rides. I remember the Calico Mine Ride when I was young and it was my favorite ride! Glad to see it's as amazing as ever!
Jimmy "Did Gertrude meet Woodstock?" Bo
Do not believe this post!
90% of the time, I am sarcastic all the time...it's science!
When I visited the park last Sunday, I was impressed with what they did with the Mine Ride. It was a nice sight to see the Mine Ride's line go into the switchbacks (and with great operations, it only took 10 minutes of waiting).
1: Lightning Run, 2: El Toro, 3: Maverick, 4: Xcelerator, 5: Voyage, 6: TTD, 7: Gold Striker, 8: El Loco (Vegas), 9: Millennium Force, 10: Kingda Ka Coaster Credits: 110 (89 steel, 21 wood); Last Coaster Credit: Raptor (CP) [8/22/14]; Last Park Credit: Waldameer [8/21/14] What a season pass??
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