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California Great America (CGA) Discussion Thread


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A thing to think about, as much as I seem to be talking back and forth, torn between sides. Perhaps the lease on the land does not call for an entertainment and retail plaza, in which I have a feeling JMA has in store to 'link' the stadium and park, to give people something to check out en route to the stadium or park (much like Universal's City Walk, or the PGA "Front Gate" concept). Too soon to tell though.

 

Doing some Google searches a few days ago to see if I find anything showcasing the stadium concept and if there's any other concepts, I did find a couple note-worthy things. First off, I know this will not solve all of the parking issues but this should help (create nasty traffic issues getting out) minimize some of CGA's lot usage.

This lot will sit across the street from CGA's overflow lot/stadium site on Tasman. Apparently, groundbreaking has already happened.

 

This looks like an older concept, when the plans were to have the stadium sit right in CGA's main lot. Disregard the missing Flight Deck!

 

Lastly, what appears to be an older concept (and solidifies my thoughts about retail, entertainment, and restaurants:

Looking at this, and the above photo, the Sports Central area looks like the car parking structure, "Wateropolis" and "Coastal Boardwalk" sections to be something along the park's edge (so much for park expanding into lot), and the Entertainment Central area adjacent to the car park to probably feature maybe restaurants and other entertainment opportunities.

 

This is all guesswork and sort of like putting a puzzle together, all 99% speculation. In the end, maybe the ground lease doesn't call for such things to exist but who really knows?

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The old concept doesn't show Great America in much detail and even though Flight Deck is missing, I don't see Star Tower or any other actual ride there. Also, it's odd that an amphitheater is on the Whitewater Falls location. I think Great America won't have anything special in 2012, it will just be the same, but 2013 will be a different story. Plus, how could there be a new ride from JMA when they would only own the park for 3 months when the park opens, it takes some time to install a large ride.

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Sorry to change the subject--

 

Those of you who've read my posts know that I'm obsessed with the Pictorium. So now, I've been doing some research about it online, and in the near future, I'm planning on writing an article for my CGA blog based off of my "findings." (The journalist in me can't resist). Perhaps I might start a series of "Lost Attractions" articles.

 

Just thought I'd share something interesting (well, at least to me) that I found: Contrary to popular belief, the Pictorium was actually open after 2001. Paramount had an anime festival in 2004, and the Pictorium was open for a day showing anime films. Although, the Imax equipment was already gutted, and the films were being shown on some "quickie" standard projection system.

 

I need your help! I'm looking for any images of the Pictorium that you might have when it was open. I'm really interested in what it looked like inside during it's final years (or any time, really). If you have any pictures that I can use for my article (and I would give you credit in my article, of course), I would really appreciate it! Thanks in advance!

 

What I've found so far:

 

pictorium2.JPG.60161920aebb966beab42cef00383bd1.JPG

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Sounds like an interesting writeup. Speaking of Pictorium, when we were going through Club Blood, one of our group members accidentally opened the black curtain thinking that was the way to go. No blackout was present in that area and we got an extremely nice view of the seats all still intact and some of the floor lights were on (or was that rope light?). I had to quickly tell him that we need to head left, not right. And of course me looking at the excessively high ceiling, the talent took the advantage of that and got me a couple times.

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Hmm, I should go look through some of my parent's photo albums, one I came across did have photos of Great America in the late 1970s, including some of the Hometown Square Train Station and other portions of the park I can't recall right now, makes me wonder if any of them had the IMAX in it at all, now just to recall where I saw them last in the garage.

 

That is interesting that it was used once more several years after it closed, I never would of thought, where'd you find that out at? Makes me wish I'd taken some pics of it's interior when I worked at the park, but then again the doors were likely locked. I recall years ago, one associate I was talking to about the IMAX, claimed water was leaking into the space and that it was sinking slightly. Not sure how much truth there is to that given they use the space for Haunt.

 

As for the Stadium, here is the other plan for it, across the creek on the "overflow" parking lot and Centennial Drive with the planned parking garage across Tasman Drive.

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I recall years ago, one associate I was talking to about the IMAX, claimed water was leaking into the space and that it was sinking slightly. Not sure how much truth there is to that given they use the space for Haunt.

 

I remember reading that same thing a few years ago. Also that the building had really bad mold and milldue. (sp?)

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Sounds like an interesting writeup. Speaking of Pictorium, when we were going through Club Blood, one of our group members accidentally opened the black curtain thinking that was the way to go. No blackout was present in that area and we got an extremely nice view of the seats all still intact and some of the floor lights were on (or was that rope light?). I had to quickly tell him that we need to head left, not right. And of course me looking at the excessively high ceiling, the talent took the advantage of that and got me a couple times.

 

That was around the "mad scientist" computer part in Club Blood right? That's where I saw the seats, the emergency exit curtain was open, giving a nice view. I also got scared pretty good from looking up at the ceiling and not paying attention to the maze!

 

That is interesting that it was used once more several years after it closed, I never would of thought, where'd you find that out at?

 

I found it here:

 

http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/press-release/2003-10-04/north-america%27s-only-theme-park-anime-festival-returns-to-paramount%27s-great-america-in-2003

 

and here:

 

http://kinotechnologies.wordpress.com/2011/09/27/great-americas-pictorium-ruined-imax-for-me/

 

Although one site says 2003, and the other 2004. Maybe the anime festival was held twice?

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So...who's up for some Skyhawk pictures?

 

skyhawk.JPG.f91a6a037768449a8c28740186c976ae.JPG

skyhawk3.JPG.58fe7b5b98cbe2ba280bd50e00e47d30.JPG

 

How about Vortex entrance pre-Vortex?

 

prevortex.JPG.8d77dae1c7cceec7f6ec1158357a7c87.JPG

 

Green Vortex?

 

greenvortex.JPG.6cfbf8c49cce7205a1e93989d44d544c.JPG

 

Or maybe Whizzer demolition?

 

whizzer.JPG.aea8a18787ab0ad3873ca9abd352f7fa.JPG

You can still see those footers at the bottom today.

 

Okay, you get the point. I found a really good site with great pictures. You have to view it through the Internet Archive:

 

http://web.archive.org/web/20110215023032/http://www.greatamericapics.com/main.php

 

Lastly, I found this on greatamericaparks.com:

 

icecreamslaughterhouse.jpg.c53240e79ec8d27aa497238df7d54999.jpg

Slaughterhouse entrance with ice cream, minus all the blood!

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Anyone thinking of going to global winter wonderland. Don't. It's cool lights but not worth 12 bucks. Also I have heard many stories about great America being haunted and my uncle has had experiences lol

 

Pretty much, Yes . Great America is being haunted by a boy who died on Willard's Whizzer years ago when the ride was still there.

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I had a weird experience when I was working drop zone. A penny fell from the seat that the kid had fallen out of after we had cycled 6 times with empty seats (we were opening the ride) it would have fallen out after the first time and their wasent even a penny when I checked the seat right before it happened. Weird. However I don't think drop zone is haunted. They say ghost haunt places they are connected to so I feel like no guest who have died here would haunt the park. Unless they loved coming here the only other connection is that this is where their death happened. The showtime theater is haunted by a little boy. The story goes before it was great America a house was there and it burned down and the boy died. My uncle has told me many stories about this ghost. If anyone wants to hear more let me know

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I had a weird experience when I was working drop zone. A penny fell from the seat that the kid had fallen out of after we had cycled 6 times with empty seats (we were opening the ride) it would have fallen out after the first time and their wasent even a penny when I checked the seat right before it happened. Weird. However I don't think drop zone is haunted. They say ghost haunt places they are connected to so I feel like no guest who have died here would haunt the park. Unless they loved coming here the only other connection is that this is where their death happened. The showtime theater is haunted by a little boy. The story goes before it was great America a house was there and it burned down and the boy died. My uncle has told me many stories about this ghost. If anyone wants to hear more let me know

 

Not sure if it is true or not, but I've heard that the Great America (Paramount) Theater is supposedly haunted as well. As for the Drop Zone, that is strange, the penny falling from the seat. Which cabin set was it, #1-3 or #4-6? I worked at Drop Zone a few times last season when I was not needed at Firefall and it was a pain at times.

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