Gatorland

Gatorland

You squirm impatiently in the back seat of the family sedan, waiting for the endless greenway of Florida’s Orange Blossom Trail to yield something of interest. For miles, roadway signs have promised wonders ahead at “The Alligator Capital of the World.” Soon, there it is, a long strip of buildings and walkways, fronted by a memorable entrance - a giant concrete gator head, its mouth wide open, beckoning you to enter. Welcome to Gatorland. Continue reading...

Peoplemover

Peoplemover

Never mind those pesky jet packs or flying cars from The Jetsons. In the future, man will travel in groups of four, roughly at the pace of a hurried snail. At least that was the vision put forth by Walt Disney, with his futuristic transportation system called the Peoplemover. While this form of transportation never quite caught on in the real world, it did provide a nice, leisurely journey through a section of Disneyland. Continue reading...

Lazer Tag

Lazer Tag

Lazer Tag was all the rage when it was introduced in 1986. It was the cops and robbers of the future, the ability to shoot light beams at each other and score points for direct hits. With a Starlyte gun, StarBelt, StarVest, and even a StarHelmet, players were well equipped to battle each other in 23rd century fashion - in playgrounds, backyards, or even better - in giant futuristic arenas, complete with space-age obstacles and concert light shows. If you were a kid in the late 80s, you certainly remember Lazer Tag and the extensive marketing campaign on television and in comic books that accompanied it. Continue reading...

Disneyland's Haunted Mansion

Haunted Mansion

The following scenario plays out dozens, if not hundreds of times a day in front of Disney’s Haunted Mansion:Small Child: “I don’t want to go inside there.” Parent: “It isn’t scary. It’s fun!” Small child: “No, it isn’t.”And back and forth they go, the young child unable to reconcile their parents’ reassurances with the menacing-looking house that stands behind an eerie wrought iron fence and is purported to be haunted by 999 happy haunts (with room for one more). Continue reading...

America Sings

America Sings

The year was 1974 and America was working itself into a patriotic frenzy with preparations to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the nation. The all-American theme park, Disneyland, joined in on the bicentennial fun and gave visitors an E-Ticket attraction to celebrate the history of American music in a decidedly Disney way: through the use of dozens of audio-animatronic animals, all singing and dancing their way through some of the most-beloved music of our past. Continue reading...

King's Island

King’s Island

Opening its gates in 1972, King’s Island, located just north of Cincinnati, Ohio, has been thrilling visitors of all ages for over 40 years. With its well-kept grounds, an arsenal of top-notch roller coasters, and numerous movie and television tie-in attractions, King’s Island never fails to put smiles on the faces of locals and tourists alike. Continue reading...

Marineland

Marineland

High atop the pristine California cliffs of the Palos Verdes peninsula lies the remains of a once-magical wonderland, where dolphins, pilot whales, and killer whales delighted millions of fans with their aquatic antics. A decade before there was Sea World in San Diego, there was "Marineland of the Pacific." Continue reading...

Disneyland

Disneyland

It’s hard to imagine a world without a Disneyland. Disneyland is an American icon – no, a global icon – that has set the standard for family fun for over half a century. More than a place, it is a symbol of childhood dreams, of timeless wonder, and of the power of fantasy. But once upon a time Disneyland itself was a mere dream that would take years of planning to become a reality. Continue reading...