Sunday, October 30, 2011

Lion Country Safari, May 1974

Lion Country Safari, in Irvine, California, is long gone (it closed in 1984). But it is missed by many SoCal locals!

Mr. Giraffe has been placed in such a way that passers-by on that road will be at eye level with him. That makes it easier to feed him hamburgers and french fries and share the occasional cigarette. He likes menthol.

There are some lions! Snoozing, as usual. The few times I made it to LCS, I always hoped a lion would leap onto the hood of our station wagon, like they did in all the commercials. No such luck. We should have hidden some hamburger under the hood. Check out the iconic jeeps, painted in a zebra-striped pattern.

If lions are too scary for you, how about a few goats and some deer? You can see the coin operated machine that dispensed some sort of mysterious animal chow, which was not half bad. A little salt helped.


TokyoMagic! said...

The Animal Chow must not have been THAT good....the poor deer is chewing on his own leg!

And what's with the fence and barbed wire around the giraffe? Weren't they running around loose? I never got to see this place in person. :-(

Chiana_Chat said...

Hm mebbe the fence is electrified and the Giraffe is recharging.

Never saw LCS either. Well thanks for the views all the more then!

(Hamburger under the hood!)

outsidetheberm said...

The fence kept the Giraffe from the entertainment center - the camp you see behind. The raised area is probably not a roadway, but, instead, the railbed for the short lived train.

Always enjoy some great Lion Country Safari shots. Thank you, Major!

Now, if you ever find any Kodachrome taken of the 'Jeep Ride' (the kid's ride through dark Africa), please give us a peek! They seem to be the holy grail shots - we've only got one!

Connie Moreno said...

Ha! I remember our car being surrounded by zebras....

Chuck said...

[Shudder] The Jeep of my all-time, most frightening childhood memories.

Stuck alone in a jeep on a track with a steering wheel that did nothing, unable to stop my vehicle or turn around, I was dragged whimpering into a blacklit tunnel painted with flourescent native spears and shields (all I saw before I closed my eyes tight shut agaist the terrifying menace), certain I was about to be whisked away and dropped into some boiling cauldron to become one of Shrunken Ned's display models. Thanks for dragging THAT memory to the surface.

I'll be sleeping with the light on tonight...

Douglas McEwan said...

For a while a close friend of mine worked at LCS, and I got to go out with him once in one of the employee jeeps, which had bars on the windows but no glass, so I found myself more face-to-face with a lion than I really cared to be. Went there a number of times. Great place. Much missed.

Major Pepperidge said...

Outsidetheberm, I WISH I had photos of the Jeep Ride! Believe me, if I ever find any I will post them.

Chuck, it sounds awesome!

Douglas, any idea why the jeeps wouldn't have glass AND bars??