Sunday, July 31, 2011

Knott's, October 1975

Welcome back to Knott's Berry Farm! I'd offer you a slice of boysenberry pie, but all I have left is a slice of snozzberry pie. It's yours if you want it, though.

Once again we are in front of the Calico Mine Train attraction, which was 15 years old at this point - but still great. One thing that's different from other photos that we've seen is the exterior queue winding back and forth, which I can only assume means that the ride saw some healthy crowds recently. And one can't ignore the sawhorses placed near the train tracks, with a sign apologizing for the inconvenience. I originally thought that this might have to do with the opening or construction of "The Roaring 20's", but that opened about 4 months earlier. Construction for "Knott's Beary Tales" began at about this time, so maybe that's what was going on.

One of my favorite things to do is to get really, really drunk when I go to an amusement park. So a saloon holds tremendous appeal to me; unfortunately this one only served soft drinks and ice-cold boysenberry juice. But I can't stay mad!


Chiana_Chat said...

Think it's just track maintenance goin' on in the top pic. Love that Mine Ride. So awesome of the people at Knotts today to be keeping it going!

If it's possible to get plastered on Boysenberry Punch and Pie I'd get loaded every visit! Oh. How I wish I could visit Knotts now. Anyone have spare vacation money...

Nancy said...

Chiana, i dont even have regular vacation money this year, but if i find any ill let you know!

the Calico is so nice and very inviting...did/do they have a revue there as we find at Magic Kingdom? this is still on my must-go-there-someday list. :-)

Chuck said...

I can't speak for today, but in 1976 they had a small show in the saloon that consisted of at least two dancing girls, a male performer or two, and a piano player. I don't remember much about it (I was seven after all) other than it seemed very tongue-in-cheek and that the pianist played Scott Joplin's "The Entertainer."

When we heard the song again months later at a hockey game in St Louis, my sister, who was just barely five, exclaimed "Knott's Berry Farm!!!" It's now a family tradition to call out "Knott's Berry Farm!!!" every time we hear the song. Folks hate us at art house showings of "The Sting..."

Connie Moreno said...

Chuck, yes they still have that show in the saloon! I had the privilege of being the only person in the audience last March, LOL. I even wrote about it in my blog.

Major, I get plastered every time I go to DCA, LOL.

TokyoMagic! said...

Yay, Knott's in the seventies!

That extended queue for the Calico Mine Train used to fill up during the Halloween Haunts when they would do a scary overlay in the attraction.

The show in the Calico Saloon used to take place on top of the actual bar, but in the eighties, they knocked out the wall behind the bar and built a stage for the shows.

Unknown said...

Awesome! In 1975 I was 5, and remember going there with my parents and asking if I could get "POISON-Berry" Juice. LOL

Nancy said...

thanks for the insight, everyone!

JG said...

Here's a new view to me. I have never experienced a crowd large enough at the Mine Train to require a queue like that. I recall it as almost a walk-on every time.

I do recall that saloon, though. There were some pics of the interior of a bar posted recently which looked very familiar, not sure if these are the same. I remember the bar with a big barrel dispensing boysenberry punch, which I didn't like (then). Mom and Dad were not big on the saloon, even with "pretend" liquor, 'cause, you know, that's how you learn bad habits... by pretending.

Thank you for the pictures, Major, and everyone else, for the memories.


Gary R. Salisbury said...

OK, now it is time to clear up some myths in regards to the Calico Can Can show and the Calico Saloon.

First of all, the saloon does serve beer nowadays and it has for several years now, much to my disappointment. It has lost its classy appeal.

Secondly, before 1974 several of the girls that worked in the saloon would do a bar dance at several different times during the day. They were not entertainment employees, they worked for Ghost town Operations.

In 1974 we put in a saloon show performed by entertainers from the entertainment department. The show opened in November of 1974 on the small stage above and to the right of the bar. Only the upstairs seating had a good view of the entire show. The downstairs audience had to kind of crank the necks to see it.

The show ran at this location until the early eighties when we were finally able to take the large painting down and we extended the wall out about 25 feet making it a real stage behind the bar.

The cast at that time included an MC, female singer, drummer, piano player, two dancers, and a comic.

I left Knott's Berry Farm in September of 1989, so I have no idea of the history after that point.

That should clear up some misconceptions. Nowadays I do speaking engagements on the history of Knott's Berry Farm and in particular the entertainment history beginning in 1970.