Opened in 1973 Adventureland is an amusement park located in Altoona, Ia. About 20 min from where I live. Each year my employer provides entrance and meal tickets to the divisions employees. The last thing I really wanted was to be on my feet all day. But hey, its free and I have kids.
Visiting a park like Adventureland will give you an even greater appreciation for the Disney parks. The following commetns on this post are not intended to slam Adventureland. Instead they are meant to show how Disney really goes the extra mile. This post may run a bit long and as I said I am not trying to vent here.
Let's start with the theme park mascot, every park needs one. Six Flags has Bugs, Disney has Mickey, Universal has... umm... Universal has... What does Universal have? Adventureland has Bernie the Siberian Husky. If you refresh the link I posted above you can view Bernie in multiple poses. Here is my favorite. To me it says "kiss my butt" I really don't get this image. In another image Bernie is an amputee without his left arm. And in another he looks drunk.
Before entering the park you can pick up a map. Note two things here, instead of a Mickey head this park has a large A and the maps are not multicultural. (ok I understand that, but I am surprised that they did not have a Spanish copy)
The front portion of the park is clearly styled after Disneyland. The train station sits up on a berm and you walk under the tracks to enter Main Street. (what no castle?)
The first attraction everyone wanted to go on was the Raging River. Think of it as our answer to Kali River Rapids.
I got soaked on the Raging River. I would spend the rest of the day in damp shows and socks. Next we headed to the back of the park to one of the two western themed areas of the park. In this photo you can see an example of something an imagineer would never allow. (Note the floating hoses next to the water cannons.)
After leaving this area I noticed this attempt at product branding ala the Passamaquoddy style.
Although our park does not have Dumbo we do have something close. The flying Dragon ride. (not quite Elliot though)
We have a Tea Cup ride (but you can't spin them)
We don't have a Maliboomer. We have a Space Shot.
We have two audio animatronics. One of which raises his arm and twitches his head. Here is the old prospector himself.(note the creepy wig)
The lack of themeing stands out all over the park. Just look at this row of attractions standing side by side.
Our log ride is missing its mountain.
Instead of Pirates we have the "Infant Ocean"
So what else does it have?
It has a train.(although reduced in scale)
It may not have Sky Buckets but it has Skychairs.
It has a School on Main Street.
You can buy Hanna Montanna and High School Musical gear here.
I even managed to find a hidden Mickey.
And a giraffe.
I know this park could never truly be compare to a Disney park. It is after all, simply an amusement park and not what "I" consider a true theme park.
In the end we had a pretty nice time.
I made my piece with Bernie.
And I purchased a Mickey window decal for each side of my car.