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Shane's Amusement Attic


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As a frequent guest to Universal Studios Hollywood growing up, I can honestly tell you that the people in the water tank were indeed park guests. I was able to experience that show for myself and thankfully the water was heated. Once picked for the show most people were given some type of costume to wear (water tank candidates were given a complete set of clothes including under garments). It was a blast jumping from the platform into the water.

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Well one fortunate thing for me that came out of Hurricane Katrina and the insane gas prices shortly thereafter was that I cancelled my trip to Branson and instead went on a much shorter day trip to Libertyland...little knowing that LL would close just weeks later! I'm glad I got to go for one last spin on ZP and Revo.

 

I remember LL had a REALLY amazing water ride where you sat solo in a plastic "raft" and slid down a steep slide then freely skipped across a "pond" without any control. It was scary and great!

 

LL's drop tower, Rebellion, was one of the scariest I've ever experienced as there was no pause at the top before the drop. One second you were going up up up, and then whoosh DOWN! It's now at Ghost Town in the Sky where it must offer really spectacular views of the mountains. The only other one I've ever similarly experienced is at Beech Bend, but it's an A.R.M. and I believe LL's was a Fabbri.

 

Granted LL had gotten a bit run down towards the end, it was still a very fun place to visit back in 05. I hate to see that it's gone now. Thanks for digging this one out Shane!

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I remember LL had a REALLY amazing water ride where you sat solo in a plastic "raft" and slid down a steep slide then freely skipped across a "pond" without any control. It was scary and great!

Yeah and last time I went by the park it was one of the few rides still standing. I guess there's hope someone could still pick it up.

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SIX FLAGS: the early years

This next series of posts is like a Six Flags history course. Six Flags 101, if you will. We are going way back with these, back to a time when Six Flags over Texas was more about the History of Texas than Superman or Batman, when Six Flags St. Louis was Six Flags over Mid America and when Six Flags Magic Mountain was still Magic.

 

These souvenir books are like history books that show how each one of these parks used to have such charm and character, when each park had it own identity, themes and rides. Most of these books go back to the early 1970's: Big Bend was the big ride at Six Flags over Texas, Sky Hook occupied the space where Mind Bender is today at Six Flags over Georgia, Lightnin' Loops was still a concept at Six Flags Great Adventure and Magic Mountain had not yet built the Revolution.

 

But before getting to the good old stuff here is a look at Six Flags when I feel they "jumped the shark" well, this is when they became corporate parks. Marvel McFey, Bloop, Bleep and the Wizard were kicked out in favor of Bugs and Batman. Each park lost their individual logo infavor of a single look that was more nationally recognized and each park became more of an "Amusement Park" rather than a "Theme Park".

 

Click on a link below to go directly to that parks souvenir book:

 

Six Flags over Texas

Six Flags over Georgia

Six Flags over Mid-America

AstroWorld a member of the Six Flags Family

Six Flags Great Adventure

Six Flags Magic Mountain

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That's All Folks!

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Six Flags Great America: Bigger Than Disneyland So Much Closer To Home

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Six Flags Magic Mountain: The Ride of Your Life!

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Six Flags Great Adventure: A Closer Family Experience.

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AstroWorld: Family Fun, Water Adventures, Heart Pounding Rides.

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Six Flags over Mid-America: The Hot Spot of the Heartland.

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Six Flags over Georgia: The World of Fun, Not a World Away.

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Six Flags over Texas: Nothing Else Comes Close.

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This is a general souvenir book that was sold at each park. It is very nicely down but definately when Six Flags got that corporate feel rather than their own identity.

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SIX FLAGS OVER TEXAS

 

The first of the Six Flags park is also one of my favorites. It seems to be the park that has tried the hardest to stay true to it's History. This look back at the park is from the early 1970's.

 

The Big Bend and the Texas Chute Out were the big rides of the time! I noticed that the park had a lot of Transportation rides; several trains, chug-chug, boats & canoes, autos and sky ride.

 

Six Flags over Texas was also the one park out of the original three to not receive a wooden coaster. In the 70's Six Flags over Georgia and Six Flags over Mid-America both received record breaking wooden coasters. Six Flags over Texas was over-looked in the wooden coaster catagory until the 80's when then received the family friendly Judge Roy Scream, Awe West of the Pecos!

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SIX FLAGS OVER GEORGIA

 

The Second of the Six Flags parks. The hills and landscape of this park also make it the most beautiful of all the parks. Even though it is not featured in this souvenir booklet, I think the Mindbender is one of the best coasters at any of the Six Flags parks. Schwarzkopf can build one kick a$$ ride especially when there is terrain involved.

 

I miss the Great Gasp with all those great lights on it. That was something to see at night!

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SIX FLAGS OVER MID-AMERICA

 

The Third and last of the original Six Flags Parks. For a while this park, rather than AstroWorld, was the red-headed step child of the Six Flags Family.

 

It seemed that not much investment was put into this park back in the 70's and early 80's, as a matter of fact for a while they took out rides rather than add them. They lost the Sky Chuter and one side of the River King Mine Ride and they where the only park in the whole chain to never receive an Intamin Free Fall.

 

While Six Flags over Texas and Six Flags over Georgia premiered such incredible looping coasters as Shock Wave and Mindbender, Six Flags over Mid America only got a portable single looping coaster, the Jet Scream, which only lasted a couple of years at the park before it was removed and shipped off to AstroWorld.

 

I have to say that Time-Warner was a good thing for this park. Since they made the major investment of adding Batman:the Ride to the park, Six Flags over Mid-America has seen some great growth and great new attactions thus passing the title of red-headed step child to AstroWorld.

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For a time Six flags was owned by Bally's, manufacuturer of video games. Pac-Man and Ms. Pac-Man where the mascots of the park.

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Judging from the Logo of this park, it was a very prideful park back in the 70's

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ASTROWORLD

 

Well once Six Flags stopped building parks they moved into buying existing parks that were struggling financially. The first of the aquisitions was AstroWorld.

 

Oh poor AstroWorld, it never seemed to find its place in the Six Flags family. It was first know as just a "member of the Six Flags Family" then it became Six Flags AstroWorld, later it became Six Flags Houston and finally back to AstroWorld a Six Flags theme park.

 

Even though it was known among enthusiasts as the dumping ground of used rides AstroWorld was my favorite of all the Six Flags parks! There just was something special about this park. I spent two seasons working at the park. One season on the opening crew of Thunder River and the next season on Greezed Lightnin'!

 

Of all the theme parks that have closed in the last while, AstroWorld is definately the park I miss the most!

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SIX FLAGS GREAT ADVENTURE

 

The next park aquired was Great Adventure. While Six Flags Great Adventure is now the Crown Jewel of the Six Flags parks it used to follow behind Six Flags Magic Mountain and Six Flags Great America. For awhile they just seemed to flounder, they put in a couple of Togo prototypes that just didn't seem to fit the park and also they where the victim of the Six Flags ride rotation program: Sarajevo Bobsleds and Shockwave.

 

I hate to offend all of you SFGAd fans out there, but this is my least favorite of the pre-Time Warner Six Flags parks, I never really got the themed lands and how they tied together and I just am not a fan of the over sized themed elements or the Fantasy-Candy theme It just felt like a carnival to me. Anyways that is just my opinion. I admit I have not been to the park in the last couple of years and when I go this summer I just may change my opinion.

 

One thing I did love about this park was the Lightnin' Loops. Loved the concept, Loved the Interlocking Loops, Loved the lighting at night, Loved the name...hated the climb up and down to the station and I am not a fan of the drawing they used for the ride in this souvenir booklet.

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Boy talk about your low clearance and head choppers!

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Again another rainbow proud park!!!

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MAGIC MOUNTAIN

 

OK, get your hankies out. This is a great look back at the park that used to be. Back to the days before the Revolution when Magic Mountain was a small family amusement park on the outskirts of LA. There wasn't a lot of theme at the time but it just was a great place. Then along came the Great American Revolution and put Magic Mountain on the map and in the Movies.

 

Unfortunately a fatal accident on Colossus and a company that wanted out of the amusement business caused the sale of the park to Six Flags. Six Flags promised to build a better Mountain and for awhile they did. Six Flags Magic Mountain was the flagship park of Six Flags chain attracting over 3.5 million visitors a year, but somewhere along the way they lost the Magic.

 

I believe the park is on it's way back. It has a great General Manager in charge now and I believe he is taking the park in a new direction that will restore the glory to the park that is once had. Well as long as he gets rid of those damn over the shoulder restraints on the Revolution.

 

Anyways enjoy this look back at the magic that was Magic Mountain! oh and don't forget to "get HIGH on fun"

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Man this park used to ROCK!

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The Grecian Fountains and the Valencia Falls are some of the things I miss the most from the old Magic Mountain. Those fountains were so beautiful at night they way they were all light up in bright colors.

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Can you imagine how difficult it must have been to paint the Sky Tower with this great color scheme? No wonder when it came time to repaint it Six Flags went with the Texas Oil Derick Orange color scheme.

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This was about the extent of the thills at the mountain back then. But I would rather have the Mountain Express back compared to some of the newer rides they have installed ie: Superman, Deja Vu, Psyclone & Flashback

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Well you are probably expecting to see something on Six Flags Great America now, but I haven't found my file with all the good stuff on that park yet. But while looking for it I did come across more great stuff on Circus World which will be my next big post.

 

Hopefully I will come across my Great America stuff soon because that really was a beautiful park back when it first opened. Well as a matter of fact it still is a beautiful park!

 

Happy New Year everyone!

 

Shane

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Thanks for posting all of that neat stuff, Shane! A few things of note:

 

1. Odd to see Pac-Man as a mascot for Six Flags. At least it was the first attempt at bringing video games into a theme park environment. I still want to see a Nintendo park though.

 

2.

I miss the Great Gasp with all those great lights on it. That was something to see at night!

 

I have to agree, I snapped a shot of that ride on my 2004 trip. Sorry for the quality;

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Great Gasp at night. Taken in 2004 from the Wingate Inn near the park.

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Thanks for the Six Flags update! I just took my kids to SFOT on Saturday. One reason I love the park is because I have so many memories there as a kid. Anyway, I think Six Flags is doing a good job of being "family friendly", we spent a whole day there and the scariest thing we rode was the Judge Roy Scream, but we still had a blast.

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Shane, I have copies of what you've just posted about Magic Mountain somewhere around here. As one who went out there many times in my youth, this is bringing back the memories of what a fun place it was then!

 

Eric

 

EDIT: I forgot to mention this: In the lower left of this picture, you can see two separate aerial tramways sharing the same support. That just looks bizarre. I know other parks have had more than one such line (even Magic Mountain had two at one time), but I've never seen any that cross each other.

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This is all like porn!

 

AstroWorld looked like an amazing park and I really wish I had gotten a chance to visit it.

 

Magic Mountain also looks so much different than today. It's amazing how park's can change over time. I'm also partial to the older rides which actually had some character to them like flumes, river rides, and freefalls. It's too bad we don't see many of these rides around today.

 

 

 

Do you have anything from the original Elitch Gardens?

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I miss all the skyrides and other ariel transport.... stuff. Am glad I did get to ride some of them in the mid-70s and 80s, etc. Till they were all (mostly) taken down due to "stronger winds", low capacity, cost of upkeep, etc. Whatever. I miss them.

 

This is an amazing look back, Shane.

 

HAPPY NEW YEAR, TPRers!

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