Amusement Parks & Roller Coasters: Overview

Modified on 2009/10/14 21:41 by admin
The first modern amusement park opened in Chicago in 1894. Paul Boxton's Water Chutes' successful opening led to an expansion park on Coney Island the following year.

Before the Depression hit America's purse strings, there were over 1,500 amusement parks throughout the country. The Depression took its toll on the industry and by the time the economic downturn ended in the mid-1930s, there were less than 400 parks remaining.

In the prosperity following World War II, the so-called "golden era" of amusement parks began. Disney's debut of Disneyland in southern California in 1955 led to a renewed interest in such attractions. The $17 million park was unlike any other. Disneyland's themed areas were unique as opposed to the typical midway. The success of Disneyland led to the development of more ambitious projects such as Florida's Disney World, Animal Kingdom, Disney/MGM Studios and Epcot.

In the 1980s, America's theme parks expanded around the globe. Disney now has Disneyland Paris and Tokyo Disneyland. The company plans to open Hong Kong Disneyland in the near future. Other theme park companies such as Six Flags and Universal have also been successful over the last several decades.

Disney also pioneered the water park with Orlando's River Country. More recent additions to Disney's water park holdings include Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon, both in Orlando.

According to industry figures, over 300 million people visit amusement and water parks each year. Consumers spent almost $10 billion on tickets in 2000.

View sub-topics at right to learn more about some of the dangers associated with roller coasters, water slides, and other amusement park rides.

See Also

  1. Dangerous Rides & Attractions
  2. Florida Strawberry Festival & Central Florida Fair Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome (HUS) Outbreak
  3. Slip and Fall | Property Owners' Liability
  4. Water Parks & Slides: Overview
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