Walls and Fences at Amusement Parks

Walls and Fences at Amusement Parks

Introduction

This week on Art of Amusement Parks, we are going to look at a landscaping feature that often goes unrecognized. It is ever so subtle but just as important as they can keep us safe from harm and injury, or just act as a divider. The feature of discussion this week are walls and fences. Canada’s Wonderland will be the park of focus this week.

Dragon Fire and Leviathan on a warm October day. Notice the purple wooden fence that is beside a gate that is normally closed.
Dragon Fire and Leviathan on a warm October day. Notice the purple wooden fence that is beside a gate that is normally closed.

The Walls and Fences at Canada’s Wonderland

As mentioned above, walls and fences can keep us safe from injury and harm. They can also act as a simple divider, either giving us privacy or acting as just a way to keep the crowds from walking aimlessly. As you will come to discover, walls and fences are a part of the landscape and can greatly beautify it when used appropriately and effectively. This time around, we’re going to give a reverse tour of the park. So, let’s begin by starting in Planet Snoopy and Kidzville.

The Whimsical Walls and Fences of Planet Snoopy

When you arrive at Planet Snoopy, the largest children’s section of the park, you will come to notice the bridge that crosses over the stream. It isn’t just any bridge but a small bridge with an arch that has a stone walls running alongside it. The stone walls feature stones which present a vast array of pastel colours, generating excitement within the youngest of visitors as they walk under the rainbow arch. Once across the bridge, the wonderful array of pastel colours does not end there. It continues along the miniature steel rail fences that line the paths within Planet Snoopy which sport the colours of purple and red pastel colours. The miniature steel fences are highly appealing and add to the landscape by giving it a sense of energy and excitement.

Passing Through The Graveyard to Ghoster Coaster

When you venture towards Ghoster Coaster, Canada’s Wonderland’s family wooden roller coaster, the smallest of visitors experience a slight sense of terror. This is caused by the surrounding scenery and landscaping involving a graveyard, including the wooden picket fence that weaves throughout Ghoster Coaster’s queue line. The short picket fences are almost like the ones in the older horror films as one approaches an abandoned house. On an interesting note, Ghoster Coaster’s queue line originally featured a steel rod fence that was removed sometime after the 2013 season. It is presumed that it was bent out of shape due to the constant climbing of children over the years. So, a newer and just as attractive picket fence took its place.

Ghoster Coaster at Canada's Wonderland. Along the path below, you can see the picket fences. GHoster Coaster is a wooden coaster that is not painted so, it has a natural brown colour.
Ghoster Coaster at Canada’s Wonderland. Along the path below, you can see the picket fences.

The Nostalgia of Kidzville

When we make our way over to Kidzville, the miniature steel rod fences continue, keeping the little ones out of trouble. These fences also host the pastel colours as seen in Planet Snoopy, creating a child-friendly experience. The miniature steel rod fences also give a sense of nostalgia in combination with the cedar trees that line the paths within Kidzville nearby Planet Snoopy. As we make our way throughout the rest of Kidzville the fences become taller as we approach the White Water Canyon section of the park.

Behind Flying Eagles, you can see the bright red, pastel colour fences that are found throughout Kidzville and Planet Snoopy at Canada's Wonderland.
Behind Flying Eagles, you can see the bright red, pastel colour fences that are found throughout Kidzville and Planet Snoopy at Canada’s Wonderland.

Wood Everywhere

Once visitors arrive in the White Water Canyon section, they will immediately notice wooden rail fences that line the paths. The rail fences are highly effective in White Water Canyon as they reflect the days of an old logging town. The wooden rail fences also present visitors with a rustic feel and a slight sense of abandonment alongside the forested area as they approach the main water ride, White Water Canyon. White Water Canyon is also home to some tall dark-green wooden fences, nearby the washrooms in White water Canyon.

A view of a food booth along the White Water Canyon-Action Zone path. Log rail fences are in abundance in and around the White Water Canyon section. Green leafy trees surround the food booth.
A view of a food booth along the White Water Canyon-Action Zone path. Log rail fences are in abundance in and around the White Water Canyon section.

Taste of Bavaria

Now, we’re making a turn and heading up the path into International Festival. The wooden rail fences continue their way into International Festival along the path leading nearby Vortex. International Festival is quite a delight to the eyes as a couple of the rides have painted fences with beautiful notches of true Bavarian style. In front of the entrance to Thunder Run, there are some basic but effective post fences with a chain running along the posts. These post chain fences also run along the bushes that grow alongside Wonder Mountain.

A view of Shockwave in operation at Canada's Wonderland. Note the red Bavarian styled fence nearby.
A view of Shockwave in operation at Canada’s Wonderland. Note the red Bavarian styled fence nearby.

Entering Action Zone

As we make our way across the bridge in front of Wonder Mountain and down the path towards the entrance, you will notice the eye-catching entrance of Action Zone. The entrance consists of white concrete pillars on both sides of the entrance with black metal decorative railings. The black metal decorative railings  attach to the wooden fence that runs along behind the buildings on International Street. Connecting from the concrete pillars leading into Action Zone are white wooden fences. These wooden fences liven up the landscape at the park especially with the placement of the shrubs in front.

My brother Scott and my college friend Phil walking into Action Zone from International Street at Canada's Wonderland. There are flags hanging off of flag posts that represent countries that were once around.
My brother Scott and my college friend Phil walking into Action Zone from International Street at Canada’s Wonderland.

The Old World Charm

Action Zone was originally known as The Grande World Exposition of 1890 from 1981 until 2001. It was rejuvenated as Action Zone in 2002 as a plethora of new thrills made their way in, replacing some of  the much loved attractions. Action Zone still has some fences that represent old World charm. One of these fences acts as a privacy screen for those eating on the patio at the Backlot Café. The beautiful lattice fence was rebuilt for the 2016 season, replacing the one that was well-weathered.

The newly constructed Backlot Cafe patio walls within Action Zone at Canada's Wonderland. The patio has white lattice fence and purple overhead terrace.
The newly constructed Backlot Cafe patio walls within Action Zone at Canada’s Wonderland.

Decorative Fences of Action Zone

Throughout the remainder of Action Zone, you can find black metal fence railings lining the rides and queue paths. Taller black metal railing fences can be found around Kingswood Music Theatre. You can also find singular chain metal post fences that mostly serve as a decorative piece around the flowerbeds.  Also, visitors waiting in line for Time Warp will notice the old, rustic looking wooden fence. The wooden fence acts as a part of the landscape and also hides the service roads behind. Now, let us make our final stop of this tour where the walls and fences are arguably the most decorative at Canada’s Wonderland.

Land of Knights

As we venture across International Street, we come to Medieval Faire. It is a section themed around the days of the medieval era. The main entrance to Medieval Faire is very decorative and livens up the landscape as it features a castle drawbridge. Convincing castle spires sit-atop the castle drawbridge entrance. Along both sides of the castle drawbridge are authentic looking castle walls that greatly compliment the castle drawbridge entrance.

Canada's Wonderland's first Oktoberfest Event during September 2016 in the Medieval Faire courtyard. The notched castle wall is in the background. There are blue banners hanging from the wooden posts set up for the Oktoberfest event.
Canada’s Wonderland’s first Oktoberfest Event during September 2016 in the Medieval Faire courtyard. The notched castle wall is in the background.

Arthur’s Bay Stone Wall

Once further inside Medieval Faire, visitors can discover even more eye-appealing walls that replicate the glory medieval days. A beautiful authentic looking medieval –made wall surrounds Arthur’s Bay. The low wall surrounding Arthur’s Bay is made of stone and looks like a castle wall. It has the notches, along with chains hanging between the notches. The low stone wall also allows visitors to view the diving show without any obstructions. One of the most appealing features along the stone wall around Arthur’s Bay is a miniature lookout. This miniature lookout is located along the wall nearby The Rage. It perfectly complements the medieval theming found throughout the section.

Here is a photo of a ride at Canada's Wonderland known as The Rage as it swings over Arthur's Bay. The water is green and brown, whereas the ride is brown. The sky is blue with some white fluffy clouds.
The Rage and Arthur’s Bay at Canada’s Wonderland. The miniature look out can be seen to the left of The Rage.

Conclusion

With that, our tour of walls and fences found at Canada’s Wonderland comes to an end. I hope you enjoyed looking at the subtle, yet stunning aspect of the landscape at amusement parks. Next week’s blog post will be a surprise so, stay tuned for hints on our Facebook and Twitter accounts! In the meantime, be sure to check out 2016 photos of the beautiful landscape at Canada’s Wonderland thanks to CoasterCircuits.

Artificial Landscape Features at Amusement Parks

Artificial Landscape Features at Amusement Parks

Introduction

Our first post looked at the natural landscaping features at Canada’s Wonderland. This week on Art of Amusement Parks, we are going to look at the artificial landscaping features at Canada’s Wonderland.

Artificial Landscape Features at Canada’s Wonderland

As we know, landscaping comes in many forms, including ponds and streams, trees, flowers, shrubs, and even paths. But, what you may not realize is that there are many iconic and notable artificial landscaping features at amusement parks. We are going to take a tour around Canada’s Wonderland to look at some artificial landscaping features throughout the park.

Wonder Mountain at Canada's Wonderland on a beautiful Spring morning. The royal fountains shoot across the fountain pool below.
Wonder Mountain at Canada’s Wonderland on a beautiful Spring morning.

The Iconic Wonder Mountain

First, let us take a look at the all-mighty iconic Wonder Mountain. Wonder Mountain situates itself at the top of International Street. Wonder Mountain is a 150 foot tall artificial concrete structure that has been an iconic feature at the park since opening year of 1981. Interestingly enough, from 1981 until 1985, visitors were able to walk up the Wonder Mountain walkway capturing a view of the park from above.

Thunder Run's train speeding alongside Wonder Mountain. Thunder Run's first car is blue and the following cars are yellow.
Thunder Run’s train speeding alongside Wonder Mountain.

The Closure of Wonder Mountain Walkway

The Wonder Mountain walkway closed after the 1985 season to make way for Thunder Run, one of the three roller coasters that operates on Wonder Mountain. In 1991, Wonder Mountain became home to another park favourite roller coaster, known as Vortex. Vortex is a suspended coaster that was manufactured by Arrow Dynamics. Vortex drops off the West side of Wonder Mountain at a height of 90 feet. For the 2014 season, Wonder Mountain’s Guardian debuted, taking visitors on a 4D roller coaster/dark ride experience through the interior of Wonder Mountain. All three roller coasters situate themselves within the International Festival section of the park. Wonder Mountain situates itself between International Street and International Festival.

One of Vortex's trains descending off Wonder Mountain down the first drop that goes under Wonder Mountain's Guardian. Vortex has red coloured track with dark-grey supports. Wonder Mountain has grey coloured track with white supports.
One of Vortex’s trains descending off Wonder Mountain down the first drop that goes under Wonder Mountain’s Guardian.

A View of The Past and Present-Day Entertainment

Another interesting feature visitors may not know about is the walkway behind Victoria Falls. This walkway was accessible for visitors and allowed them to catch a view behind the Victoria Falls of Wonder Mountain. This pathway closed after the 1988 season due to safety concerns. Speaking of Victoria Falls, visitors at the park can watch the iconic Victoria Falls High Divers descend off of Wonder Mountain into the water 60 feet below. This spectacular diving show has been a tradition since opening year. It runs daily (weather permitting) from Victoria Day weekend until Labour Day. Although Wonder Mountain is the largest artificial landscaping feature at Canada’s Wonderland, there are some other notable artificial landscape features that definitely deserve some recognition. The next landscape feature we will be looking at is just off of International Street.

The Land of Medieval Fantasy

This iconic artificial landscape feature not only serves as a decorative piece, but also acts as an entrance to one of the most themed sections of the park. The entrance in discussion is the entrance to Medieval Faire. The Medieval Faire entrance truly serves as eye-catching feature that has been a part of Canada’s Wonderland’s landscape since 1981. The Medieval Faire entrance features a large castle-like drawbridge entrance with authentic looking castle spires which adorn at the top. Throughout the majority of the season the entrance sits bare. It is only until October that the park decorates it with Halloween decorations for the annual Halloween Haunt event.

The entrance to Medieval Faire is all covered up with netting and skeletons. The netting is brown and the entrance is a castle.
The entrance to Medieval Faire is all covered up with netting and skeletons.

Pieces of the Past

Fascinatingly enough, the Medieval Faire entrance used to be slightly more decorative as it had ropes anchoring down from the pulleys which are seen still intact within the entrance. Despite the removal of this feature, the Medieval Faire entrance still is an attention-grabbing feature amongst the landscape at the park. Since we are at the entrance of Medieval Faire, we might as well head in and check out the rest of the artificial landscaping features found within the section.

The Medieval Faire entrance during the park's first Oktoberfest event. The entrance to Medieval Faire entrance is one of the decorative artificial landscape features at the park.
The Medieval Faire entrance during the park’s first Oktoberfest event.

The Life Within Medieval Faire

When you enter Medieval Faire and go past Wonderland Theatre, you will come to notice the castle towers that stand tall nearby the station of Dragon Fire. These castle towers appear to be in disrepair as they add to the medieval landscape within the Medieval Faire section of the park. But, they are actually quite stable and sound as they have been since the grand opening back in 1981. As we move further along the path, you will come to notice the entrance to Spinovator. The entrance to Spinovator truly reflects and compliments the medieval landscape situated throughout the section. It may appear to visitors as a medieval timed residence that was once occupied long ago as it has the authentic wooden shingles. Many buildings throughout Medieval Faire, as well as other sections of the park feature wooden shingles, causing the buildings to appear older than they actually are.

Spinovator at Canada's Wonderland on a warm summer day. Spinovator has red, yellow, blue, and orange buckets that hold two passengers each in a circular formation.
Spinovator at Canada’s Wonderland on a warm summer day.

The World of White Water Canyon

As we move throughout Medieval Faire and head up the path through International Street, we come across White water Canyon. The section of White Water Canyon is where visitors can feel the most seclusion while at Canada’s Wonderland. White water Canyon opened in 1984, with a water ride of the same name. The White Water Canyon river rapids ride is home to some spectacular artificial landscaping features. These artificial landscaping features consist of the rocks that line the ride’s water channel, tunnel, and the waterfalls nearing the end of the ride. The waterfalls of White Water Canyon not only serve as a decorative landscape piece, but as a soaking experience for those lucky (or unlucky) passengers of White water Canyon.

The drenching waterfalls of White Water Canyon. The waterfalls consist of large rocks and gushing water.
The drenching waterfalls of White Water Canyon.

The Remnants of a Saw Mill

Another humble landscape feature amongst White Water Canyon is the water pump building located across from the revolving station platform. The water pump building looks as if it is an derelict building amongst an old saw mill as it presents a worn sign, with old styled light hanging above. It truly sets the mood for an adventurous river rapids ride, in conjunction with the surrounding trees.

A Step Back in Time

As we travel along the path connecting White Water Canyon and Action Zone, with Splash Works in between, we arrive in Action Zone. Once in Action Zone, you will come to notice some interesting artificial landscape features throughout this section of the park. One of the most noticeable artificial landscaping features is viewable nearby the flying coaster, Time Warp. At the entrance of Time Warp are some rather interesting pieces of the surrounding landscape.

The Warriors of Action Zone

On display are some ancient Egyptian warriors who guard the entrance to Time Warp. Interestingly, Time Warp was previously known as Tomb Raider: The Ride, in relation to the movie Lara Croft: Tomb Raider. The ride has been known as Time Warp since the 2008 season as Canada’s Wonderland’s second owner, Paramount sold their parks to current owner, Cedar Fair in 2006. Time Warp currently presents a highly level of landscaping despite the mass reduction over the years.

The entrance to Time Warp with its decorative display. Egyptian warriors stand near the entrance as Time Warp's sign is held up by log supports.
The entrance to Time Warp with its decorative display.

A Global Standpoint

Before we end our tour, let’s take a look at a couple final artificial landscape features found within Action Zone. When visitors approach International Street from Action Zone, they will notice a couple of decorative spectacles. These spectacles are in proximity to Xtreme Sky Flyer and include the giant globe of the World and the Moroccan themed building. The giant globe has been a feature at Canada’s Wonderland since opening day on May 23rd, 1981. It originally symbolized the original theme of Action Zone, which was The Grande World Exposition of 1890. The Grande World Exposition of 1890 featured many Asian, African, European North American, and Central American culture. The giant globe was originally more neutral in colour, receiving a more vibrant paint scheme in more recent years.

Moroccan Is All The Rage

The All the Rage gift shop across the way features a Moroccan style building. It has also been a feature at the park since opening year. All the Rage gift shop was previously known as the Moroccan Bazaar, featuring gifts and trinkets of Moroccan style. The building still prominently features an extent of its heritage, only beautifying the surrounding landscaping efforts of Action Zone.

All the Rage gift shop's tower lit up on Season Pass Sneak Preview Night 2016. A yellow light illuminates the tower.
All the Rage gift shop’s tower lit up on Season Pass Sneak Preview Night 2016.

Conclusion

With that, comes a close to the look of artificial landscaping features at amusement parks. I hope you  enjoyed looking at the artificial beauty that can be found throughout Canada’s Wonderland! Next week we are going to take a look a look at the walls and fences at amusement parks. In the meantime, be sure to check out Been Here Done That’s view of the landscape at Canada’s Wonderland.

Paths at Amusement Parks

Paths at Amusement Parks

Introduction

When you visit an amusement park, you’re always walking on this aspect of the landscape. It is something you find everywhere you go in the park. The aspect of landscaping we are looking at this week on Art of Amusement Parks are the walking paths found at amusement parks. The amusement parks of discussion will be Canada’s Wonderland and Kings Island.

A view of Medieval Faire with the grey brick path.
A view of Medieval Faire with the grey brick path.

A Special Feeling

Although walking paths are the most walked on component at amusement parks, they are in fact a part of the landscape. They tend to add to an amusement park’s ambience, giving every park a different feel. The ambience that walking paths generate is emphasized by the material used that makes up the paths. Different construction materials produce different vibes as we will discover throughout this article.

The Magic of Walking Paths

First, let us take a look at the wonderful walking paths at Canada’s Wonderland. When Canada’s Wonderland opened on May 23rd, 1981, the first-time visitors were greeted by the magical brick walking paths. These brick paths led visitors to the excitement and thrills that awaited them. Almost 36 years later, the massive collection of brick paths still lead the way to the exciting attractions that millions of visitors greatly enjoy.

A look down International Street at Canada's Wonderland once you enter the main entrance. The floral Canadian Flag and Wonder Mountain are in view.
A look down International Street at Canada’s Wonderland once you enter the main entrance.

Eye Catching Paths of Medieval Faire

As visitors venture throughout the park, they will instantly notice the different displays of the bricks found along the paths. These displays consist of different coloured bricks and interesting patterns, along with the regular grey path bricks. A great example of the brick path designs found within the path is the one that surrounds the Medieval Faire fountain. Thick strands of dark greyish-coloured bricks branch out from the fountain, giving the surrounding path a sun-ray type look.

Here is an aerial view of the brick walkway paths surrounding the Medieval Faire fountain.
Here is an aerial view of the brick path surrounding the Medieval Faire fountain.
Map data: Google

A Thrilling View

Another decorative brick path display is in sight nearby Drop Tower,  also within Medieval Faire. Nearby Drop Tower, visitors notice the large checkered squares that are prominently featured, only adding to the excitement of what’s yet to come for those who experience the thrills of Drop Tower. The checkered brick path is highly noticeable for passengers riding Drop Tower as they descend towards the ground, coming to a fast and safe stop.

Colourfulness of the Path Bricks

As for the coloured bricks display, this can be found nearby the Coasters diner in Action Zone. The pinkish-red bricks welcome visitors into Coasters diner and creates a great visual display for those walking by. The pinkish-red bricks don’t only just stop in front of Coasters. The bricks continue their way up the path towards Slingshot and Windseeker, creating a somewhat swirling design. When you venture back towards International Street through Action Zone, you will come across the giant globe. Surrounding the giant globe is a ring of pinkish-red bricks that complements the roundness of the globe. The globe has been a prominent feature at Canada’s Wonderland since opening day back in 1981.

Coasters diner at Canada's Wonderland on a warm September day. Coasters Diner is a bright blue with pink trim.
Coasters diner at Canada’s Wonderland on a warm September day.

Emphasizing the Smallest of  Thrills

In another section of the park at Canada’s Wonderland, that being Planet Snoopy, the paths display light-brown bricks. The slightly brown coloured bricks surprisingly complement the surrounding landscape within Planet Snoopy, as well as emphasize the thrills and excitement generated by the youngest of visitors. Not only do the path bricks found throughout the park enhance and compliment the surrounding landscape, they also help flow and drain rain water that would otherwise pool and flood asphalt paths.

Ghoster Coaster in Planet Snoopy at Canada's Wonderland. The brown path leads the youngest thrill seekers and the young at heart to this fun small wooden coaster. The Ghoster Coaster sign is purple and yellow.
Ghoster Coaster in Planet Snoopy at Canada’s Wonderland. The brown path leads the youngest thrill seekers and the young at heart to this fun small wooden coaster.

Splashing Fun Paths

Throughout the rest of Canada’s Wonderland, particularly in Splash Works, visitors will come across large concrete tiles. These large concrete tiles lead visitors to the slides and other water attractions.  These concrete tile paths tend to keep visitors’ feet cool from the glaring sun, while keeping visitors from slipping on the potentially wet paths as visitors venture from one slide to the next. The large concrete tiles spread throughout Splash Works somewhat gives visitors the impression as if they’re walking along a large pool deck. Now that we have looked at the various attractive path designs at Canada’s Wonderland, we are now going to take a look at the equally attractive paths at Kings Island.

Splash Works on a bustling warm day. There are water slides in the background.
Splash Works on a bustling warm day.

Paths of Kings Island

There are many path materials to be found throughout Kings Island. You will notice this as you begin to travel throughout the park. The various path materials consist of bricks, asphalt, and concrete. Once entering through the front entrance, visitors instantly see the nicely placed bricks that are laid out on International Street. As visitors venture towards the Eiffel Tower, located at the end of the Royal Fountains, they will begin to walk on asphalt. Typically, visitors often frown upon asphalt at amusement parks as it collects the heat from the sun. But, at Kings Island it is used effectively nearby the Eiffel Tower.

Nostalgia of Asphalt Paths

The asphalt surrounding the Eiffel Tower produces a vibe of an older amusement park that creates a certain kind of nostalgia of long ago. Visitors can greatly experience the nostalgia of yesteryear as they stroll along the asphalt path nearby the Grand Carousel. This asphalt has large shade bearing trees which helps add to the nostalgic experience.

The Grand Carousel at Kings Island in the evening with a shade over casting the asphalt walking paths. The Grand Carousel building it a creamy white with red trim.
The Grand Carousel at Kings Island in the evening with a shade over casting the asphalt path.

The Asphalt Paths of the Eiffel Tower

The asphalt paths located nearby the Eiffel Tower then spread out to the rest of the park. If you venture off to the left (east) of the Eiffel Tower, you will enter into Octoberfest and Coney Mall. These two sections are effectively and attractively laid with brick paths combining with the beautiful landscape. These brick paths also generate the feeling of an old style amusement park. This is true, especially once combined with the vintage rides, the large maple trees, and patios set up along the paths. The nostalgic sensation of Coney Mall generated by the brick paths also comes to life at night as the lamp posts and ride lights illuminate throughout the section. This makes visitors to feel as if they’ve stepped back in time.

A look down onto Coney Mall from the Eiffel Tower at Kings Island. There is a large white coloured wooden roller coaster to the left of the photo.
A look down onto Coney Mall from the Eiffel Tower at Kings Island.

Concrete Paths of Action Zone

When visitors venture north from Coney Mall, passing through Oktoberfest, they will arrive in Action Zone. Action Zone at Kings Island is home to many dynamic and thrilling rides. Action Zone is also home to the land of the concrete paths. There is indeed a benefit to concrete paths. In fact, the use of concrete paths greatly reduce the heat stress that visitors experience on paths made of asphalt.

Shade Amongst the Paths of Action Zone

Visitors at Kings Island will also notice the large shade space that was attractively constructed central of the concrete paths within Action Zone. This shade zone does not only keeps visitors cool from the hot Ohio summers, but is a part of the landscape at Kings Island. Large yellow and white triangular canopies cover the shade zone, shrubs surround the area which perfectly compliment the concrete paths, in turn beautifying the area.

A View of Action Zone ta Kings Island from the Eiffel Tower. If you look closely, you can see the shade zone in the center of the concrete pathway. The shade zone has yellow and white canopies.
A View of Action Zone ta Kings Island from the Eiffel Tower. If you look closely, you can see the shade zone in the center of the concrete pathway.

Paths Leading Into the Waters

If we make our way over to the far side of Kings Island, we will come to Soak City, Kings Island’s water park. Just like Splash Works at Canada’s Wonderland, Kings Island’s Soak City has paths laid with concrete tiles. The use of the concrete tiles throughout Soak City truly adds to the landscaping efforts found throughout Soak City. The concrete paths also cause visitors to feel as if they’re a part of a gigantic surf or beach party. This is a true effect especially since the paths lead into the lazy river and the two large wave pools that are some of the many attractions that cool visitors.

The Tropical Twister slides in Soak City at Kings Island. The concrete path can be seen to the right of the slides. The slides are painted blue.
The Tropical Twister slides in Soak City at Kings Island. The concrete path can be seen to the right of the slides.

Conclusion

As you have just discovered,  walking paths are more than just paths. They indeed add to the landscape at amusement parks. Also, different materials create a certain feeling or vibe that enhances the overall experience for visitors. The next time you step into an amusement park, look at how the paths enhance the landscaping efforts. Next time, we will be looking at the artificial landscaping features at amusement parks! Until next time, be sure to take a look at the landscaping features at Canada’s Wonderland during its early years thanks to Vintage Toronto via Facebook!

Landscaping Throughout the Seasons at Amusement Parks

Landscaping Throughout the Seasons at Amusement Parks

Introduction

This week on Art of Amusement Parks, we are going to take a look at landscaping throughout the seasons at amusement parks. The park in discussion this week will be Canada’s Wonderland.

 

The Seasons of Change

As we know, there are four distinct seasons in North America in some of the Northern and Western hemispheres. These seasons consist of Spring, Summer, Fall, and Winter. To some amusement park enthusiasts, there are only two seasons. Those seasons are roller coaster riding season and the off-season (when the park is closed)! Joking aside, the landscape at amusement parks truly transforms in front of visitors’ eyes as the seasons change. First, let us take a look at the season of Spring, the time of year amusement parks come alive.

Here is a view of International Street at Canada's Wonderland. Purple, yellow, and red flowers take place of the floral Canadian flag in the early May seasons.
Early in the season, the Floral Canadian flag hasn’t arrived yet. In place are some beautiful annuals.

Springtime at Canada’s Wonderland

Preseason events begin by starting off with bank days and media days.  The operations of the rides do not only indicate that Spring is here! The vegetation found throughout the landscape at Canada’s Wonderland does as well. If you have ever entered the park prior to late May or early June, you will notice a difference. The major difference you will incur is that the iconic Canadian flag floral arrangement is not there. In its place is a beautiful arrangement of various annuals that stays until the arrival of the Canadian Flag in late May.

A view of an empty International Street at Canada's Wonderland on a day in June. The path consists of brown bricks and the floral Canadian flag is in the background. The Canadian Flag is red and white with a maple leaf in the center.
A view of an empty International Street at Canada’s Wonderland on a day in June.

Budding of the Trees

As we venture throughout Canada’s Wonderland in the Spring, you will come to notice the lack of shade. You may also notice how easy it is to see across the park. Although there are some coniferous trees such as spruce and pine throughout the park. At this time of the year, the deciduous trees are only starting to bud. This allows for the park’s landscape to appear and feel somewhat empty, while retaining its true beauty. Visitors can experience the view as they walk around the park and catch a few rides in the warm and fresh Spring air. The lack of leaves on the trees also allows for some quite interesting shots. These shots would not be able to be captured other times of the year.

Here is a view of the Vortex roller coaster early in the season at Canada's Wonderland. The trees have no leaves on them as it is Springtime. Vortex is a red roller coaster where the cars hang beneath the track.
As the trees are budding and creating leaves, Vortex can easily be seen from along the White Water Canyon to Action Zone path.

 

A Summer of Fun

As Canada’s Wonderland approaches the month of June, the trees begin to fill in and create shade. The floral Canadian Flag at the front of International Street makes an appearance for another season. Prior to the Summer season, the work of the grounds maintenance and landscaping teams at Canada’s Wonderland kicks into high gear.

Effectiveness of the Landscapers

Many floral arrangements throughout the park are quickly installed. These floral arrangements can delight the hundreds of thousands of visitors as they are attractively placed alongside queue lines, walking paths, and even some of the park’s most thrilling attractions! The summer months truly display the beauty of Canada’s Wonderland. As we venture into Summer, the crowds along with the hot temperatures begin to arrive. These hot temperatures can sometimes wreak havoc on flowers, shrubs, and trees. But, the landscaping team at Canada’s Wonderland has been able to perfect the art of keeping some of the most important landscaping features alive during these usually boiling months.

The flowers in the flowerbed in Action Zone keep their beauty in the sweltering heat of the summer. The flowers are purple and red in colour.
The flowers in the flowerbed in Action Zone keep their beauty in the sweltering heat of the summer.

 

The End of Summer and the Terror to Follow

Once the summer begins to wind down in late August, the school children are about to return back to classes.  There’s a hint of landscaping change that is about to come.  This change of the landscape makes Canada’s Wonderland extremely popular during the Fall months, especially on weekend nights. Before we get to that frightening time of the season, let us look at the hint as to what’s to come.

 

The Terrorizing Transformation Begins

In late August, Canada’s Wonderland begins to announce that the most chilling part of the season is to come. With this announcement comes the installation of the Halloween Haunt house at the front of the park on International Street. The Halloween Haunt house displays as to what visitors should expect when they venture to the park on those cool October weekend nights. Also in late August and early September, the Halloween Haunt hearse rolls into town, attracting the attention of many park visitors. This is only the beginning on the landscaping transformation that the park experiences in the Fall season.

Here is a view of the Halloween Haunt haunted house display on International Street at Canada's Wonderland. The house is purple surround by a green fence.
A sneak peek as to what is yet to come later in the season.

 

Spook-tacular Landscaping

Once late September rolls around, so does the extensive landscaping and theming of Canada’s Wonderland’s Halloween Haunt. For the remainder of the season, Canada’s Wonderland’s landscape is transformed into possibly the most terrifying landscape visitors’ can experience. Prior to the start of Halloween Haunt, Whitewater Canyon is closed down for the season and transforms into the terrifying maze of Corn Stalkers.

The entrance to Medieval Faire is all covered up with netting and skeletons. The netting is brown and the entrance is a castle.
The entrance to Medieval Faire is all covered up with netting and skeletons.
A skeleton taking a sip of wine from a staircase on International Street. The skeleton is holding a green bottle.
A skeleton taking a sip of wine from a staircase on International Street.

 

Halloween Haunt Landscape

Once October hits the rest of the park, ghoulish and spine-tingling creatures begin to appear throughout the park. These horrifying creatures are found hanging from lamp posts, lurking in the bushes and flowerbeds, as well as the ponds and streams around the park. Other mazes and attractions also appear around the park, waiting for those daring to step inside on cold weekend nights in October. Where the floral Canadian flag sits is where the major Halloween haunt display sits. It transforms into a haunting graveyard filled with an abundance of blood-drooling demons, mauled bodies, and spiders larger than life! This spook-tacular display sure gets visitors into the mood for Halloween during the day and at night.

Here is the horrid looking but, friendly ogre that resides in the stream nearby the entrance to Medieval Faire during Halloween Haunt. The orge is wearing brown baggy clothes and has huge hands.
Here is the horrid looking but, friendly ogre that resides in the stream nearby the entrance to Medieval Faire during Halloween Haunt.
One of the many ghouls that lurk over visitors in the Fall at Canada's Wonderland. The ghoul is wearing all black and has red blood from the mouth.
One of the many ghouls that lurk over visitors in the Fall at Canada’s Wonderland.
The Halloween Haunt graveyard is set up where the floral Canadian flag usually resides. The sky is blue and the willow trees have a slight yellow tinge to them.
The Halloween Haunt graveyard is set up where the floral Canadian flag usually resides.
A closer look at the graveyard on International Street at Canada's Wonderland. There are a couple of demons and ghouls crawling towards the camera.
A closer look at the graveyard on International Street at Canada’s Wonderland.
Another graveyard is set up within the Action Zone section of the park for Halloween Haunt nearby Time Warp. There is a large alter with a huge grave stone in front of it.
Another graveyard is set up within the Action Zone section of the park for Halloween Haunt nearby Time Warp.

Daytime Fall Beauty

Aside from the extreme horrors and scares that visitors can experience during the months of late September and October, there is a less scary side to the landscape at Canada’s Wonderland. As the temperature becomes cool and crisp, the colours of the leaves on the trees begin to transform. The tree leaves make way to a dazzling display of shades consisting of reds and yellows. This transformation of the trees creates for some picture perfect opportunities as visitors roam the park.

A panorama view looking from the Action Zone and White Water path in front of Splash Works. Some of the tree leaves have began to turn brown.
A panorama view looking from the Action Zone and White Water path in front of Splash Works.

Festive Fun for the Young Ones

There is another less terrifying experience for the younger visitors of Canada’s Wonderland during the month of October. Planet Snoopy and Kidzville transform into Camp Spooky. Changing the landscape of these sections reflects the festivities of the season. Camp Spooky excites the youngest of visitors as the landscape features children-friendly Halloween decorations found throughout the two sections of the park. Camp Spooky is only a daytime attraction for visitors during weekends of October.

 

The End of A Season

Finally, once Halloween Haunt finishes horrifying visitors for the season in late October, the dismantling of the horrifying scenery occurs. This marks the end of a season at Canada’s Wonderland. Throughout the Winter, the park sits idle bracing the cold and snow, while park staff and executives prepare for another season of thrills and excitement. I hope you enjoyed looking at the landscaping throughout the seasons at amusement parks, in particular at Canada’s Wonderland! Next week, we are going to look at the paths at amusement parks! This sure will be a landscaping feature you do not want to miss! Until next time, be sure to check out CoasterCircuits’ video below of what fun there you can have at Canada’s Wonderland in October!