Joyland Amusement Park

Joyland Amusement Park was a small family-owned traditional amusement park, located in Lubbock, Texas, United States within Lubbock's Mackenzie Park. It typically operated from March to September of each year, opening 6 days a week but only during the evening on weeknights.

Joyland Amusement Park
Company typePrivate
IndustryAmusement Park
Founded1940s (as Mackenzie Park Playground)
Headquarters500 Canyon Lake Drive,
Lubbock, Texas United States
Key people
David Dean, CEO
Entrance to park

History edit

The park was founded in the 1940s with the name "Mackenzie Park Playground." In 1973, it had 13 rides and was acquired by the Dean family, who renamed the park to its current name. Members of the Dean family still operate the park.[1] Like many smaller parks it uses a mixture of individual ride admissions and pay one price admission, with patrons taking their choice.

On September 12, 2022, The Dean Family announced that Joyland would not reopen and the park will be auctioned on October 27, 2022, if an interested party, with a viable offer, is not found by October 1, 2022. On October 21, 2022 it was announced that buyers Jim and Kai Evans along with Daryl and Stephanie Holland would reopen the park for the 2023 season.[2][3] The park would not reopen in 2023 following an announcement on January 10, 2023, that buyers backed out of the purchase, and liquidation of the park would begin soon.[4]

Misty Midway

Layout and operation edit

The park is laid out linearly with a midway. Much of the midway has water sprayers overhead to mist guests, which increases guest comfort in Lubbock's hot, dry climate. There are several water rides, roller coasters and family rides.

There is a park train that runs from one end to the other, with a station near the kiddie rides as well as one at the far end of the park, done in ATSF colors, as well as a sky ride/chairlift system, with a single station, both of which allow patrons to view the entire park.

Galaxi coaster

Rides edit

The park has about 30 rides, including 2 roller coasters. There is an old time carousel at the park entrance which features classic advertisements on the top, as well as a selection of typical rides such as a Trabant (ride), Scrambler (ride), and bumper cars.

Roller coasters edit

Name Opened Manufacturer Description
S.D.C. A Galaxi roller coaster model.
Dragon Wagon
Wisdom A Dragon Wagon roller coaster.
Sand Storm
Cavazza Diego A small Blizzard roller coaster.

Thrill rides edit

Name Opened Manufacturer Description
The X-Factor Extreme
KMG A Freak Out pendulum ride.
Wisdom A Genesis ride.
Dare Devil Drop
Larson/ARM Rides A Drop Tower that stands 140 feet tall ride.
Musik Express
Mack Rides A Musik Express ride.
Eyerly A Roll-O-Plane ride.
Eyerly A Rock-O-Plane ride.
Eli Bridge Co. A classic Scrambler ride.
Space Shuttle
Morgan A Space Shuttle-themed swinging ship ride.
Eyerly A Space Shuttle-themed swinging ship ride.
Sellner Manufacturing A traditional Tilt-A-Whirl ride.
Chance Manufacturing A Trabant ride.

Family rides edit

Name Opened Manufacturer Description
Dizzy Dragons
SBF Visa Group A spinning dragon ride.
C.W. Parker Co A classic Carousel ride. Originally built in 1902
Bumper Cars
Pinfari A classic Bumper Cars ride.
Hopkins Rides A chairlift ride.
Crown Metal Products A Train ride.

Kiddie rides edit

Name Opened Manufacturer Description
Ramagosa A spinning ride similar to the Musik Express.
Antique Cars
Arrow Dynamics A track car ride.
Big Trucks
Visa International A track car ride themed to firetrucks.
Ramagosa A boat ride.
Molina & Son's A Helicopter ride.
Sky Fighters
Allan Herschell Company A plane ride.
Allan Herschell Company A Whip ride.

The coasters of the park include:

  • The Galaxi is a (standard model with about 36 instances extant) steel coaster manufactured by S.D.C., a defunct Italian coaster manufacturer,[5] in 1971. It was relocated from White Swan Park (Coraopolis, Pennsylvania) in 1989. It has a single train with 2 cars, 2 rows of 2 across riders per car, for a total of 8 riders.[6]
  • The Little Coaster manufactured by Carl Miler was replaced with a Wisdom Dragon Coaster in 2016.
  • Greezed Lightnin' was planned to be installed in 2006 and given a new name. After the ground was set aside, it was found to be unstable, and installation was first delayed and later cancelled.[7] This Schwarzkopf Shuttle Looper was purchased from Astroworld in Houston, Texas. It has a single train with 7 cars, with 2 rows of 2 riders per car, for a total of 28 riders.[8]
  • For the 2010 season, Joyland added Dare Devil Drop, a 140-foot (43 m) drop tower ride manufactured by Larson Int. The name Dare Devil Drop was entered in a "name the ride" contest by Wesley Orr, a fifteen-year-old resident of Leonard, Texas. Orr said he thought of the name while reading about the new Evel Knievel roller coaster opening at Six Flags St. Louis that same year. Dare Devil Drop opened on May 24, 2008.
  • Dipsy Doodle is the junior coaster that was replaced with the Wisdom Dragon Coaster in 2016.
  • In 2018, Joyland added the X-Factor Extreme. This is a pendulum-type ride and the gondolas rotate. The ride swings in a 200 degree arc giving the riders feelings of both positive and negative G-forces. With the rotation of the gondola, no two rides are alike.
  • In 2019, Sand Storm, a Cavazza Diego Blizzard model, was installed.
Paratrooper ride

References edit

  1. ^ from the park site Archived 2006-06-19 at the Wayback Machine history page
  2. ^ "Joyland to be auctioned off, family says park will not reopen". KLBK | KAMC | 2022-09-12. Retrieved 2022-09-12.
  3. ^ Stegall, Amber (September 12, 2022). "Joyland will not reopen, is now for sale". Fox34. Retrieved 2022-09-12.
  4. ^ Edgin, Alana (January 10, 2023). "Buyers back out of Joyland Amusement Park rescue, liquidation to begin". Lubbock Avalanche-Journal. Retrieved January 10, 2023.
  5. ^ from RCDB Archived 2006-05-15 at the Wayback Machine info on S.D.C.
  6. ^ from RCDB on this Galaxi instance
  7. ^ from the park site Archived 2007-08-24 at the Wayback Machine page which claims to be reprinted from an Amusement Today article by Gary Slade, Volume 10, Issue 1, April 2006. no longer mentions the coaster.
  8. ^ from RCDB site on new coaster plans

External links edit