Retro Photo TR: Amusement Park Vacations from the '70s!

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Postby Mark Rosenzweig » Mon Feb 23, 2009 1:15 pm

cfc wrote:^Not to mention why they're "eating" a zebra. (Or as the skippers sometimes joke, "Aw-w-w-w, look at those lions keeping watch over that sleeping zebra. 'Can you feel the love tonight. . . .'")

The old Busch Gardens in southern California did have a log ride at one time, as well as a boat ride through the gardens.


Most of the trough, boats, and other components from the Southern California Busch log flume went to Great Escape in Lake George (then Storytown U.S.A.). Desperado Plunge opened in 1978 as a new anchor to the pre-existing Ghost Town area.

One rare attribute that Desperado, Le Skoot, and Stanley Falls all have in common (besides all formally having the spillway coaster element that can only now be experienced on Kennywood's Log Jammer) is that their boats have two separate divided seating areas (unlike nearly all other Arrow Log Flume boats that feature one long bench for tandom seating- some with seat backs and some without).

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Postby larrygator » Thu Feb 26, 2009 9:27 pm

Back in 1972, the major marine park in Florida was located just outisde St. Augustine. Marineland opened in 1937 and is still operating today. I think my father was more excited about this park than anything else we did during this vacation. As I said previously, my family never took a lot of pictures, but I think there were more pictures from Marineland than the other 3 Florida parks we visited combined.

However, I won't bore you with all the pictures because most are poor quality or multiple pictures of the same dolphins and whales jumping over and over again. I guess my dad really loved those fish.

On to the photos. If anyone really demands more polaroids of these stupid fish, let me know and I'll post more.
Marineland sister (Medium).jpg
This was THE PICTURE SPOT at Marineland. Only my sister had her picture taken. Dad was hoarding the "roids" for the fish.
Marineland Dolphin (Medium).jpg
Hey, my dad took a picture of the trainer petting a dolphin. oooooooh!
Marineland Dolphin 2 (Medium).jpg
Hey, my dad took a picture of two dolphins jumping through hoops. aaaaaaah!
Marineland Dolphin 3 (Medium).jpg
Hey, my dad took a picture of a dolphin jumping in the air for fish. Zowzer! I have no idea why the guy with the fish between his teeth is wearing a Varsity hat.
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Postby Erik Johnson » Fri Feb 27, 2009 7:08 am

Marineland did close for a while but it reopened a few years ago as more of a teaching/education park. For example, I do not think they have the dolphin show anymore. I believe it is the world's first sea animal park.
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Postby crazydaveh » Fri Feb 27, 2009 1:13 pm

They are offering dolphin encounters these days, similar to Discovery Cove's.

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Postby larrygator » Sun Mar 01, 2009 9:15 pm

Back in the early 1970's it wasn't all about Florida and Disney or Corporate parks. Families with young kids could still have a great vacation closer to home at hundreds of small local parks. In the next 3 installments I will show pictures from a week long family vacation to the Lake George region of New York in 1974.

This next round of pictures is from an extinct park that was located at the top of a hill. You entered the park by going inside a "spaceship" (a room that moved and had flashing lights to simulate space travel). Then you went through a tunnel or underground room that would take you to another planet.

You exited atop the hill where you encountered a lot of giant plastic and fiberglass characters that were supposed to represent different eras in time from the prehistoric era to the present era of space travel.

The name of the place was Time Town. Enjoy!

If you want to see more of this long lost park can can visit this site:
RemeberingTimeTown
Time Town 1 (Medium).jpg
Even though there were cars way back in the '70s, we took this alternative form of transportation to the park.
Time Town 2 (Medium).jpg
Next we got to hang out with Jeff Johnson.
Time Town 4 (Medium).jpg
My siblings and family friends decided to get a picture with this pecker.
Time Town 3 (Medium).jpg
My sister goes back for more quality time with the park's mascot.
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Postby cfc » Mon Mar 02, 2009 6:01 pm

Next we got to hang out with Jeff Johnson.


Wow--that was one big cigarette Jeff was packing there.
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Postby larrygator » Fri Mar 06, 2009 9:04 pm

For those of you not too busy trying to guess where Robb, Elissa and the Jew are, I bring to you more photos from my childhood.

My family remains in Upstate New York, visiting a small theme park called Santa's Workshop. The owners of the park filed to have their park designated as a new town called North Pole, New York with it's own post office and zip code.

The park is still in existence today with a coaster that was not there when I visited in 1974. The park may not look like much by today's standards but these types of parks were just as enjoyable as Disney to a 7 year old.
Santa's Workshop (Medium).jpg
Screw you and your fake castle Disney. We are the North Pole and have a REAL post office to prove it.
Santa's Workshop Reindeer (Medium).jpg
Oh really Disney? You have a guy dressed in a mouse costume. We got a real f'n reindeer. Yes, Chris that's a real reindeer.
Santa's Workshop Kiddie Ride (Medium).jpg
My Sister says. "Dumbo can bite it, I'm in a freaking turtle." Come on Dumbo, bring it on.
Santa's Workshop Feed Sheep (Medium).jpg
This is how an animal feeds sheepishly. You got that Disney, real animals.
Santa's Workshop Feed Goat (Medium).jpg
Of course Disney would try to one up Santa's Workshop 30 some odd years later with Animal Kingdom. But does Disney have killer goats? I don't think so!
Santa's Workshop Bobsled (Medium).jpg
My father's photography skills have improved greatly since upgrading from the Polaroid to the Kodak 104 Instamatic, but this Bobsled ride just moves too fast. Certainly better than "If I had Wings" at Disney.
Santa's Workshop Photo Op (Medium).jpg
Ooh at Disney you can get a beanie with two plastic things stapled to it and look like a mouse. At Santa's Workshop you get pimped out in authentic Santa Christmas Hats made by real elves.
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Postby cfc » Sat Mar 07, 2009 7:22 am

There must've been some federal law that required each state to have a Christmas-themed amusement park. When I was a kid we had Santa's Village, which I think was in the hills near Santa Cruz, Calif. My family has old home-movie footage of it somewhere.
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Postby larrygator » Tue Mar 10, 2009 9:12 pm

This will be the last update from Upstate New York before I return to Florida theme park pictures. Funny thing about this Lake George vacation is the most memorable moment had nothing to do with amusement parks.

My family was checking into the Moose Mountain Lodge. We were getting two cabins, but back in the pre-internet days reservations were never firm until you reviewed the hotel/resort. Well we starting walking around and touring the cabins. My mom was not impressed and my father was trying to convince her to stay. All of a sudden a kid that was a couple of years older then myself comes running out of the woods yelling, "Mommy, Mommy there's a bear in the woods." We ran back to the car and found someplace less rustic to stay.

Now on the the pictures. Storytown was delightful for a family with young kids. Plenty of characters from fairy tales and miniature buildings to play inside. Charlie Wood really created a great family institution with this theme park in a much simpler time.
Storytown Entrance (Small).jpg
We start with a picture of the park entrance, it just seems right.
Storytown Train (Small).jpg
Look at how happy all the child are standing in front of the train for a picture. We want to get on the rides!
Storytown Train 2 (Small).jpg
My brother, sister and myself are much happier riding the train than standing in front of it.
Storytown Boats (Small).jpg
The awesomeness of a boat ride powered by a giant swan.
Storytown Bumper Cars (Small).jpg
I used to be terrified of bumper cars. Now people are afraid to get into a car when I'm driving.
Storytown Carousel (Small).jpg
Carousel at normal speed
Storytown Tea Cups (Small).jpg
Lou, JimmyBo, Robb and any more of my Tea Cup homeys. I've been a fan for decades.
Storytown Helicopter (Small).jpg
Not quite the Flyers at Knoebels, but you have to start somewhere.
Storytown Italian Coaster (Small).jpg
The first photo documentation of me on a rollie coaster and my one and only contribute to rcdb.com
Storytown Jail (Small).jpg
Now we get to pictures from the western area. We were thrown in jail for refusing to subject ourselves to an anal cavity search.
Storytown Pony Ride (Small).jpg
There's the drug running mule. No not my sister. Actually they still have pony rides at Great Escape as on upcharge.
Storytown Ride (Small).jpg
Now on the the junior version of the "Kick Bootie" ride.
Storytown Barber (Small).jpg
For years I thought this occured at Six Gun Territory, but the age of the photos and my brother don't fit in so this must be from Great Escape, but I've been wrong in the past. I refused to get a shave as I have always been fearful of sharp objects.
Storytown Shoot Out (Small).jpg
For the last picture I bring you this wonderful shot of a random women's ass and the Wild West Shoot Out Show.
Last edited by ernierocker on Sun Nov 14, 2010 2:23 pm.
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Postby montezooma » Tue Mar 17, 2009 5:11 pm

Larry-

These old photos are great. I really like the one the kiddie helecopter ride. I have so many memories of riding these type of rides at almost every amusement park I went to as a kid. (the woman ass shot is questionable)

Hey you said you had some pictures of you and your family at Circus World. When do we get to see those?

Keep the old photos coming!

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