Wednesday, January 27, 2016
Welcome to the NINETEENTH installment of GDB featuring Ken Martinez's collection of vintage amusement park postcards! Let's get right to it with Ken:
Kings Dominion, Doswell, Virginia
Kings Island's sister park "Kings Dominion" opened in Doswell, Virginia in 1975. The Brady Bunch of Partridge Family didn't visit here, but George Segal, Richard Widmark and Timothy Bottoms did in the 1977 motion picture "Rollercoaster". It was one of the main set pieces along with Magic Mountain in California and Ocean View Amusement Park in Virginia. Like its sister park, it utilized Hanna-Barbera characters to interact with park guests. Themed sections in the park included International Street, Old Virginia, Candy Apple Grove, Happyland of Hanna-Barbera, and Safari Village.
International Street serves as the main thoroughfare at the entrance to Kings Dominion. I love the beautiful central fountain and gardens.
The Galaxi coaster was a portable model made by S.D.C. It was probably considered temporary until budget allowed for better coasters later on. Towering over the park in the backdrop is the Eiffel Tower, similar to the Kings Island edifice in Ohio.
Here's another one of those cards with the Hanna-Barbera cartoon character placed in the photo. It looks like one of the Banana Splits gang, but I'm not sure who. Featured are the Turnpike auto ride and the kid-sized wood coaster Scooby-Doo in the background. (Major Pepperidge here... this looks like "Bingo" to me!).
The Mason Dixon Music Hall was a theater showcasing live show productions like "Give My Regards to Broadway" which played several times daily. I remember these types of shows at Marriot's Great America in the 1970's.
Rebel Yell, another John Allen out-and-back classic woody was one of the three roller coasters featured in the film "Rollercoaster" along with the Revolution at Magic Mountain and the Rocket at Ocean View Park. I love the classic PTC trains featured here.
I love these color border cards. Interesting in this card is that the park name "Kings Dominion" is displayed on the top of the lift hill and on the front of the coaster trains, but absent in the previous cards.
King Kobra, which opened in 1977, was one of the first Intamin (weight drop) Shuttle Loops to open along with the White Lightnin' shuttle loop in Carowinds theme park. Later versions opened up using the fly wheel method like Montezooma's Revenge at Knott's Berry Farm.
Kings Dominion is still going strong today and has passed through many owners during its colorful history. It's now part of the Cedar Fair chain which also owns Cedar Point and Kings Island in Ohio, Knott's Berry Farm, and California's Great America in California and Worlds of Fun in Kansas City. I hope you enjoyed your 1970's vintage visit to Kings Dominion.
Information source material:
The Great American Amusement Park - copyright 1976 by Gary Kyriazi
Finland U.S.A. - copyright 1978 by Tim Onosko
THANK YOU AS ALWAYS TO KEN MARTINEZ!