Saturday, January 01, 2011


Welcome to twenty-freakin'-eleven, my friends. It's the International Year of Forests. And the International Year of Chemistry. Look it up at yer local liberry! Meanwhile I'll be doing chemistry experiments in the forest.

Did you know that today marks my 428th post without missing a day? Of course not, how could you. Let's just say that I am losing my mind.

Anyhow, I don't have a special New Year's Day subject, so I figured that Knott's Berry Farm would be a good place to visit. Fiesta Village, to be exact! It was the first new "land" at Knott's since the original Ghost Town, and was largely overseen by Water Knott's daughter Marion. It was picturesque and peaceful, with a few Mexican-themed rides such as the "Mexican Whip", and the "Happy Sombreros" (think of the Disneyland teacups, only with sombreros on top). I like this entryway that recalls the look of the Spanish missions that were a part of early California history. SoCal school kids studied them in the first or second grade, and I still remember my model of Mission San Carlos Borromeo de Carmelo (which is near Carmel), made primarily of sugar cubes. It broke on the way to school, but I got an "A" anyway.

This lake was renamed "Lake of the Flowers". I don't see any flowers, but it's pretty anyway. I'd sit on those benches for hours and practice my yodeling.

Another view of that crazy lake. There's the mountain that contained the Log Ride, and in the distance you can see the tower that held the sky jump.

I hope that all of you have a happy, healthy 2011!

Thanks to Chris Merritt's book "Knott's Preserved" for the helpful info about Fiesta Village!


TokyoMagic! said...

I love these! I had forgotten all about that Fiesta Village arch. I can't remember if it was taken down when Montezooma's Revenge went up in '78 or if it was when Camp Snoopy was built in '83. That shot is another one that's just screaming for an "After" pic. The old logging wheels are also visible in the distance of that shot (on the left beyond the arbor). They now sit out on Grand Ave.

The Sky Jump tower still looks so bright and shiny and new in that last pic....oh and I see the Monkey's there just in front of the Log Ride!

Happy New Year again, Major and thank you for the last 428 consecutive posts!

stu29573 said...

If you lived in Texas, like me, you would have built the Alamo out of sugar cubes. It was required of every school kid, I'm sure if it! Mine was huge with all of the long gone outer walls and stuff. I think the dog ate it...

The Viewliner Limited said...

Happy New Year to you and your family Major. All the best, Richard.

SundayNight said...

You may be losing your mind but you are making us all sane with your daily helping of Disneyland, Knott's and various other theme park vintage photographs. Thank you. I appreciate all the time you spend on this blog. Hope 2011 is a happy one for you.

Chiana_Chat said...

Thanks so much for the well wishes Maj, be assured we wish the same for you and I hope that it will help your sanity! :)

Your project got an A because the teacher forgot you weren't making San Juan Capistrano and it looked more realistic in ruins.

Never seen that arch! And boy I can barely remember Fiesta Village looking something like that.

Waaay to many squares in that pic. I don't just mean the ham smiling at us on the left, I mean the lady with the white and red square pants that match the square red tiles in the archways and planter.

These are great, thanks for letting me sit in your time machine again! :)

Katella Gate said...

Now that's the Knott's Berry Farm I remember. My second favorite place to spend a day.

Chuck said...

I built a model of the Haunted Mansion out of scrap wood when I was in preschool. It was accidentally donated to Goodwill by my grandmother when I was in college. I cried.

JG said...

Wonderful Knotts. Thank you Major, I have enjoyed every one of the 428. As others have said, your sacrifice of sanity has helped me keep mine. Don't ever stop.

I didnt make models of missions, but my kids did, San Diego and Carmel. It's a left coast thing.


Major Pepperidge said...

Thanks for all the good wishes, everybody!

TokyoMagic!, as always you provide the best Knott's info.

Stu, when you think about it, the Alamo isn't that different from the California Missions. Can you say "A-do-be"?

Chiana, I think my teacher apprecited the fact that I obviously worked on it myself. One kid had an architect father, and I would be surprised if the kid had anything to do with it at all. It was pretty spectacular though.

Katella, I agree!

Chuck; OH MAN! I wish I could see the model, even a photo of it.

JG, thanks a lot!

Connie Moreno said...

That was YOU I heard yodeling back then??? I thought it was a sick cat!

Major, thanks for a kick ass blog!! Happy New Year!

Anonymous said...

thanks for everything Major! Keep up the good work!

Chris Merritt said...

Thanks for the plug Dave! Happy New Year & congrats on a mind numbing 428 consecutive days! Wow - my brain hurts just thinking about that...

Nancy said...

another year of photos and stories is something i am really looking forward to...Happy New Year!