Early Amusement Parks of Orange
by Richard Harris
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Number of Pages: 128
Publisher: Arcadia Publishing
The Orange County coast had its Joy
Zone and its Fun Zone in the early decades of the 20th century.
Knott’s Berry Farm sprouted from a simple berry stand in Buena Park.
The spot that would become Walt Disney’s theme-park empire began as
a citrus grove in Anaheim. Before long, Orange County was recognized
as the nurturing ground for the growing amusement park industry.
This book concerns the early history of such parks in the county
east and south of Los Angeles, before high-tech digitization, when
custom cars, enormous alligators, stunt planes, dolphin leaps, and
movie stars’ wax likenesses thrilled patrons. Some amusement parks
have come and gone over a century of development, and some are still
here, changing with the times to create new adventure and excitement
for park goers.
About the author
Author Richard Harris grew
up in Orange County and operated rides at Knott’s Berry Farm and
Disneyland. His lifelong fascination for the amusement park industry
has been channelled into articles on rides and rider safety as well
as this book. The vintage images gathered for this window to the
past, some of which have never before been published, came from
private collections, museums, and the Orange County Archives.