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Park News

All the fun of the Scare

Scare Kingdom screams back into life this month, bringing a twisted take on Halloween to Hawkshaw Farm Park in Lancashire, England. Produced by AtmosFEAR! Entertainment, the three- week long event is now in its third year and promises to push the boundaries for 2011 with a feast of new frights combining claustrophobia, physical contact and state-of-the-art special effects. This year’s fright fest features two creepy corn maze attractions including the blood-soaked Voodoo Bayou and Day of the Dead, while terrifying new indoor scares include the nautical-themed HMS Hell and Blood Bath II, which offers the enticing prospect of, “twisted terror in the meat locker.”

Daytime attractions, suitable for families and children aged 10 and under, include the Hocus Pocus magic show and Firefang the friendly dragon. Daytime visitors can also take advantage of free entry to Hawkshaw Farm Park to see a range of small animals and enjoy Mrs Dowson’s ice cream. For the first time this year, visitors will also be able to also enjoy a selection of fun fair rides including – of course – a Ghost Train, buy a souvenir programme from the Scare Kingdom merchandise stand or calm their nerves with a drink at Bloody Mary’s Bar. Presumably spirits will be served.

Haunted Lagoon

One of the actors at this year’s Scare Kingdom Since it debuted in 2009, Scare Kingdom has been

a sell-out success and last year attracted nearly 10,000 thrill-seekers from across the UK and beyond. The 2011 edition runs from October 21 to November 5.

Ron Toomer 1930–2011

Billed as the only haunted canoe ride in the world, Haunted Lagoon at the Polynesian Cultural Center (PCC) is to return for a fourth Halloween season in Hawaii. This full-scale production features a ghastly cast of more than 100, and includes state-of-the-art special effects and animatronics. Passengers cast off on double-hulled canoes and are taken on a spine tingling journey through the dark waters of PCC’s twisting lagoon. The attraction revolves around the story of the Laie Lady, a restless spirit who fell into insanity following tragedy many years ago. Legend has it that she now wanders the lagoon searching for her lost son. This year she is joined by her vengeful, murdered husband in an extended 45-miniue experience. The Haunted Lagoon runs through until October 31, with a milder “keiki canoe” attraction available in the early evening for family members of all ages.

Former president of Arrow Dynamics and a pioneer in the development of steel rollercoasters, Ronald V Toomer passed away on September 26 after suffering from cancer. He was 81. He is survived by his wife Betty, four children, plus nine grandchildren. Born May 31, 1930, Toomer, a mechanical engineer, joined Arrow Development, the predecessor to Arrow Dynamics, in 1965 and became its president in 1986. Subsequently he served as chairman and director, before retiring in 2000, two years before the company was acquired by S&S Power.

During his time at Arrow he worked on 93 steel coasters plus numerous other rides. Perhaps his most notable achievements were his work on the first coaster to turn riders upside down, the 1975 Corkscrew at Knott’s Berry Farm, and the first 200- foot coaster, Magnum XL-200 at Cedar Point. He was inducted into IAAPA’s Hall of Fame in 2000. Although Toomer was a prolific rollercoaster

designer, he was not a rider. “I don’t ride the things I design though,” he once said. “I’ve had a bad motion sickness problem since I was a little kid. But I’ve ridden enough of them to know what happens and how it feels.”


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