Wild Adventures (known previously as Liberty Farms) is a zoological theme park in Clyattville, Georgia, which is located 5 miles (8.0 km) south of Valdosta, Georgia, United States. It is owned by Herschend Family Entertainment and has been managed by Jon Vigue since October 2020.[1] The park features rides and attractions, including six roller coasters, exotic animals, shows, Splash Island water park and concerts from country, pop, rock, Christian, and oldies superstars. The park is located 4 miles off of Interstate 75.

Wild Adventures
Previously known as Liberty Farms
LocationValdosta, Georgia, United States
Coordinates30°43′12″N 83°19′24″W / 30.72000°N 83.32333°W / 30.72000; -83.32333
OwnerHerschend Family Entertainment
General managerJon Vigue
SloganCreating Memories Worth Repeating
Operating seasonMid-March through December
Area166 acres (0.67 km2)
Roller coasters6
Water rides9

History edit

Kent Buescher, the founder of Wild Adventures, started the park with his wife, Dawn, on a plot of farmland outside of Valdosta, Georgia in 1996 for around $10 million. Wild Adventures started out as a small petting zoo known as Liberty Farms D&L.[expand acronym] The park is home to six roller coasters and numerous flat rides. The rides were initially added to the park in 1998 and it has since rapidly grown. "Splash Island", the park's water park, opened in 2003 as the park's largest expansion which includes several water slides and attractions.

In 2004, Adventure Parks Group purchased Cypress Gardens in Winter Haven, Florida. The company was privately held by Buescher. Expansion died down for the park following the Cypress Gardens purchase.

In 2005, "Gauntlet" was added, which is an S&S Power Screamin' Swing complex. For the park's 10th anniversary in 2006, the park announced their intent to add the Shaka Zula River Adventure log flume, relocated from the defunct Miracle Strip Amusement Park in Panama City Beach, Florida. The ride was delayed due to engineering problems, and never opened to the public.

In September 2006, Adventure Parks Group filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. The park operated without interruption during the bankruptcy reorganization.

On September 25, 2007, Wild Adventures was sold because of bankruptcy requirements. Adventure Parks Group LLC, announced that Cypress Gardens Adventure Park in Winter Haven and Wild Adventures park in Valdosta, Georgia, will be sold to the highest bidder in a private auction starting September 25. The sale fulfilled requirements resulting from a Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection filing by Adventure Parks Group a year ago, but did not mean the end of either theme park. The opening minimum bid for a package purchase of the parks is $53.25 million, Sumner said. The opening minimum bid for Cypress Gardens was $17.4 million and the opening minimum bid for Wild Adventures was $38.85 million. In September 2006, Adventure Parks Group filed for bankruptcy protection from creditors seeking payment for $25 million in debts. Much of the company's financial difficulties can be traced to 2004, when three hurricanes (Hurricane Charley, Hurricane Frances and Hurricane Jeanne) ravaged East Polk County, Florida and left a trail of destruction at Cypress Gardens.

On September 25, 2007, The Ledger reported that Herschend Family Entertainment had purchased Wild Adventures for $34.4 million.[2]

Upon Herschend taking over the park, they had "Gauntlet" removed and indicated that they do not plan on opening the "Shaka Zula River Adventure" log flume ride. However, Herchend did open The Rattler, the first new ride in three years, on March 21, 2008.[3] It is a Huss Frisbee type flat-ride manufactured by Moser Rides of Italy. Also, in 2008, the Tiger Terror roller coaster was sold and moved to Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa, Florida and renamed "Tasmanian Tiger".

In February 2009, the American post-apocalyptic zombie comedy Zombieland amusement park scenes were filmed at Wild Adventures.

For the 2010 season, the park added several rides including "Viking Voyage", "Whirling Wildcats", and "Falcon Flyers". All three rides were from the now-defunct Celebration City in Branson, Missouri. Gold Rush and Mystery Maze were removed. "Bug Out" was renamed "Go Bananas". The S&S Doubleshot was renamed "Firecracker".

Two new rides, "Tail Spin" and "Wacky Wheels", were added before the 2013 season; in 2015 "Jungle Rumble", a flat ride, was added.[4]

Before the 2019 season, "Fiesta Express" was moved out of storage and became "Swampwater Snake" in a new children themed area "Discovery Outpost", the S&S Doubleshot was renamed "Blazer Blast off". After the 2019 season, "Viking Voyage" moved to Fun Spot Kissimmee.

Beginning in the 2020 season, “Blackfoot Falls” was renovated and renamed “Island Falls", and the "Pharaoh's Fury" was moved to another zone of the park after the closure of surrounding rides.

In early 2021 it was announced that the park's CCI wooden coaster Cheetah would be retired after closure in the 2020 season, as were the park's go-karts and mini-golf course.

For the 2022 season, the "Falcon Flyers" was renamed the "American Flyers" and received a patriotic paint job. "Brews and Bites", a restaurant, started selling alcoholic beverages - also new covered seating and live concert area were added to it. At the end of the season, the "Yo-Yo" ride had been removed from the park.

In 2023, the "Go Bananas" roller coaster was renamed to "Marsh Mayhem". "Sidewinder" flat ride was renamed "Sandstorm Chaser" and moved to the new Oasis Outpost themed area of the park.

Sections edit

In 2019 the park built "Discovery Outpost", a new children's section, with all rides in the area being recycled, and many rides being repainted and renovated to match the theme of the area. "Oasis Outpost" was added for the 2023 season with 2 rides being moved to this new section - the Sidewinder was renamed the Sandstorm Chaser and the Trail Trackers. Past themes included Base Camp, Bugsville, Australian Outback, Alapaha Preserve, The Lagoon, African Pridelands, and Wild West.

Attractions edit

The Boomerang roller coaster
Marsh Mayhem Roller Coaster (Formerly the Go Bananas/Bug Out Coaster)
Outpost Express Roller Coaster (Formerly the Ant Farm Express)
Swamp Thing
Swampwater Snake (Formerly Fiesta Express)
Twisted Typhoon (Formerly The Hangman)

Roller coasters edit

Ride Manufacturer Year Opened Description
Boomerang Vekoma 1998 A reverse shuttle coaster that sends you through a Cobra Roll and a Vertical Loop first forward, and then in reverse.
Marsh Mayhem Maurer Söhne 2000 A steel wild mouse roller coaster, formerly known as Bug Out from 2000-2010, formerly known as Go Bananas!
Outpost Express Vekoma 2000 A family-friendly steel coaster, formerly known as Ant Farm Express up until 2019 season.
Swampwater Snake Zamperla 2003/2019 A junior wild mouse style roller coaster. Formerly known as Fiesta Express from 2003-2011. Placed in storage until 2019, added to the Discovery Outpost.
Swamp Thing Vekoma 2003 A suspended family roller coaster that travels over the park's swamp as well as the park's 15-foot alligator, Twister
Twisted Typhoon Vekoma 1999 A suspended looping coaster that sends riders head-over-heels five times. Formerly known as Hangman from 1999-2011

Thrill rides edit

Ride Photo Manufacturer Year Opened Description
Chance Rides 2004 A Chance Aviator.
Blazer Blast Off
S&S - Sansei Technologies 1999 A Double Shot tower sponsored by Valdosta State University. Renamed to Blazer Blast Off (Formerly the Double Shot and Firecracker)
Jungle Rumble
Zierer 2015 An Aladdin’s Ride type attraction
Moser 2008 A Sidewinder ride.
Swingin' Safari
HUSS 1998 A HUSS Himalaya ride
Tail Spin
Zamperla 2019 A Disk'o coaster

Family rides edit

Ride Photo Manufacturer Year Opened Description
American Flyers
Larson 2009 A Flying Scooter ride, originally installed at Celebration City. Formerly called Falcon Flyer.
Century Wheel
Chance Rides 1996 A Ferris Wheel
Kite Flyer
Zamperla 2005 A Kite Flyer ride
Pharaoh's Fury
Chance Rides 2003 A Chance Swinging ship
Safari Train
Unknown 1996 A narrow gauge C.P. Huntington ridable miniature railroad
Sandstorm Chaser
Chance Rides 1999 A Trabant ride. Formerly called Sidewinder.
Smash Attack
Bertazzon 1999 A Bumper cars ride
Trail Trackers
Zamperla 2023
Turtle Twist
Larson 2003 A Tilt-A-Whirl ride
Wacky Wheels
Zamperla 2013 Tea Cup Ride
Whirling Wildcats
Eli Bridge Company 2009 A Scrambler ride, originally installed at Celebration City

Water rides edit

Ride Manufacturer Year Opened Description
Island Falls Hopkins Rides 1999 A Shoot the Chute ride.
Tasmanian River Rapids HAFEMA Water Rides 2000 River Rapid Ride

Discovery Outpost edit

Ride Manufacturer Year Opened Description
Crunch’s Caboose Zamperla 2008 A Children's train ride
Flying Gators Sellner Manufacturing 1996 A Tea Cups style ride with alligator-shaped cars
Hoppin' Gators S&S - Sansei Technologies 1998 A tame Drop Tower
Okefenokee Friends Zamperla 2002 A Jump Around ride
Swampwater Snake Zamperla 2003/2019 A junior wild mouse style roller coaster. Formerly known as Fiesta Express from 2003-2011. Placed in storage until 2019, added to the Discovery Outpost.
Turtle Race Zamperla 1999 A children's spinning ride

Oasis Outpost edit

Ride Manufacturer Year Opened Description
Sandstorm Chaser 2023
Trail Trackers 2023

Splash Island water park edit

Splash Island is a Polynesian themed water park and is free with admission into Wild Adventures. It takes up 27 acres (110,000 m2) of the 166-acre (670,000 m2) park with seven rides, and five shops. It is frequently the most crowded area of the park. Splash Island first opened in 2003 being Wild Adventures largest expansion since rides were introduced in 1999.

When Splash Island was opened it had no theming and more closely resembled a community pool center. In 2008, Wild Adventures announced that Splash Island would undergo a $4 million renovation turning the park into a Polynesian themed paradise. Wild Adventures also announced their intent to build a new ride, the Wahee Cyclone.

Rides edit

  • Bonzai Pipelines
3 Inter-twined slides featuring the tallest slides in Georgia built in 2004
  • Catch-a-wave bay
A large 25,000-square-foot (2,300 m2) wave pool built in 2003
  • Hakini Rapids
A 5-Story "Family Sized" water slide with unexpected turns and drops built in 2011
  • Kalani Blasters
2 Medium sized inter-twined slides built in 2003
  • Kona Cliffs
A giant, "Family Sized" speed slide with three drops built in 2011
  • Paradise River
A relaxing "lazy river" through the water park built in 2003
  • Polynesian Adventure
A 4-story water fortress built in 2003
  • Wahee Cyclone
A 5-story water tornado built in 2009
  • Sea Turtle Cove
A small water play area for younger children built in 2006

Former rides edit

Ride Year opened Year closed Manufacturer Description
Chaos 1998 2009 Chance Rides A Chaos flat ride.
Cheetah 2001 2020 Custom Coasters International A custom, wooden roller coaster with steel supports (except for the figure eight which was rebuilt with wood when the entire coaster was retracked by Great Coasters International in 2010. It was also the largest roller coaster at the park. It last operated in March, 2020 and stood idle for the 2020 season; in January 2021 the park confirmed its retirement.
Gauntlet 2005 2007 S&S – Sansei Technologies A Screamin' Swing with two arms that sat 4 riders each. Following Herschend's acquisition of the park, the attraction was removed and sold to Fun Spot America.
Gold Rush 1999 2009 Chance Rides A "Big Dipper" kiddy coaster located near Safari Train. It was removed following the 2009 season and replaced in 2010 with the Whirling Wildcats Scrambler from Celebration City.
Mystery Maze 1999 2009 A Maze attraction located near Safari Train. It was dismantled and replaced in 2010 by Viking Voyage from Celebration City.
Shaka Zula River Adventure Arrow Dynamics or Hopkins Rides Purchased from the defunct Miracle Strip Amusement Park after it closed in 2004. Wild Adventures touted plans to refurbish and build it for their 10th anniversary in 2006, but it never came to fruition. Following Herschend's acquisition of the park, plans to install the ride were scrapped from the agenda.
The Inverter 1999 2009 Chance Rides An Inverter flat ride, located near Safari Train.
Tiger Terror 1998 2008 Wisdom Rides A kiddy coaster with a single helix and a tiger-themed train. The coaster was sold to ZooTampa at Lowry Park, where it received a refurbishment and opened in December 2010.
Viking Voyage 2010 2018 E&F Miler Industries A steel family coaster that operated at Celebration City from 2003 up until the park's closure in 2008, where it was then sold to Wild Adventures. Following a repaint from red to blue track during the 2016-2017 offseason, the coaster was closed in 2018 and sold to Fun Spot America Theme Parks, where after a brief storage time at their Atlanta location, it was set up and opened at Fun Spot America Kissimmee in December 2019 as Hurricane.
Power Surge Zamperla Six fixed arms are connected in an asterisk pattern, with two sets of two seats attached at right angles to the arms. The arm assembly is connected to a main arm. Twenty-four riders at a time can be loaded onto the ride. Riders are restrained by an over-the-shoulder harness, with their legs dangling free for excitement.
The Plunge 1998/1999 2006 WhiteWater West A pair of dinghy slides situated in the dry park, where the boats were delivered to the top of the starting tower via conveyor belt. Removed following the 2006 season in order to accommodate the concert venue building.
Yo-Yo 1996 2022 Chance Rides A swing ride.

Annual events edit


  • Boy Scouts Day
  • Girl Scouts Day
  • Great Pumpkin LuniNights and Pumpkin Spice Festival - Halloween themed event with several attractions, Terror in the Wild is currently discontinued and it was replaced by one of these seasonal Fall events such as this one.
  • Wild Adventures Christmas - Christmas themed event.

References edit

  1. ^ "Wild Adventures names assistant general manager". Valdosta Daily Times. Retrieved 2022-05-13.
  2. ^ Chambliss, John (September 25, 2007). "Cypress Gardens Has New Owner". The Ledger. Archived from the original on October 12, 2008. Retrieved September 26, 2007.
  3. ^ Valdosta Daily Times - Riding the Rattler
  4. ^ "Wild Adventures".
  5. ^ "Wild adventures theme park". Archived from the original on 2007-05-20.

External links edit