The Mansion Entertainment Group hasn't compared the project to nearby Silver Dollar City in Branson, Missouri, and they don't dare invoke the name of Frontier City, that little local park in Oklahoma City. They don't compare their project to Six Flags in St. Louis or Worlds of Wonder in Kansas City. They do mention Disney, though. And that's a hefty comparison. Even though Silver Dollar City has a similar footprint size to the Magic Kingdom in Orlando, Florida, SDC is only recognized as a regional park. SDC only inventories one dark ride, and its shows are often contracted productions and local musicians, while Disney takes immersive theming to a different level. Dark rides and shows at Disney World are full-on productions, created, staffed, and choreographed in-house.
That's what American Heartland is taking on. They want their park to be a destination park for people who can't make it to the East or the West Coast...and they want those people to travel to Oklahoma for a switch. The theme of the proposed park is fully immersive in six lands. Food, rides, shops, merchandise, shows, costumed employees, ambient music - everything should fit the theme of its own land. Dark rides? I welcome them. A slot floating river ride? Yes, please. Fully-produced shows with attention to special effects, dialogue, and costumed characters? Definitely. One-of-a-kind rides that you can't find anywhere else? Surely.
But to really be compared to Disney, they'll need more than one resort and more than one theme park. Disney has four theme parks in Orlando. Universal is soon to add a third park of their own, Sea World adds another, and many, many other properties pick up the slack to spread out the crowd. Unless American Heartland can partner with Silver Dollar City to let people outside of the region know that there is more than one park in the area, someone will need to build a second or third park nearby.
I've been thinking about what those themes could be. I've had a couple of ideas of my own for more than a few years.
Visit the museum and research center by itself or stay with us for a day or two to experience the unique theme park and its adjacent water park. Through the turnstiles, you'll find yourself in Everytown, but you'll know immediately that something is wrong. Something unexpected is coming. The monitors announce the coming storms and earthquakes. Take a ride on the TV helicopter that flies the circumference of the park to survey the disasters. The central hub of the park is a digital radar map always set to the present. Walk in any direction from here and you'll find yourself in one of the five "zones" of the park.
A storm has definitely been through recently. There is destruction everywhere. Hydrants shooting into the air, Cars flipped over. Buildings damaged. You decide to take a ride on The Twister, a hybrid dark ride and rollercoaster attraction that start peacefully enough...until the sirens sound their alerts. The wind picks up. There's thunder and lightning. The tornado is in the distance. Suddenly, there is silence - and your vehicle drops out of the dark building into the broad daylight, twisting endlessly through a rollercoaster of drops, and inversions. There's good news, though, as the vehicle reenters the building and serenity is restored. The queue and the exit are all about the hearty relief that comes from the best of humanity following a storm. There are even ways to donate money to ongoing relief efforts for the latest U.S. storms, and a percentage of all items in the exit gift shop will always go to helping victims recover from tragic storms.
Ride Thunder and Lightning next, an electrifying flat ride that's absolutely shocking. Youngsters will enjoy the smaller, spinning Dust Devil ride for a thrill of their own, and the whole family can soar high above the park in the Tornado Spotter, swinging 150 feet into the sky.
The disasters have just begun. You've entered the Earthquake Zone. Technically, it's not weather, but it fits. A giant crack has opened along the fault line in the center of the street and a quake could occur at any moment. The subway takes visitors underground to a 4D theater and earthquake simulator attraction that's sure to shake you up.
After you walk through the Quake Shack, pick up one of our signature Quake Shakes at the local restaurant. They come in three flavors.
Then get ready for the Volcano Challenge. You are the scientist in charge of finding the pressure points of a volcano and averting the next big earthquake. This journey into the earth will take you underneath the earth's crust into the fantasy land of underground. You may even encounter creatures that have never been seen by human eyes.
Ready for a show with music, humor, special effects, and action? This stunt-filled stage show excites the senses as the rains come and the wind blows. Board up the windows!
It's time to mount a rescue effort in the hurricane-flooded town. Join the crew of a boat that's being deployed for the purpose of surveying the damage. As you ride through the flooded town, you'll notice that the best of humanity is on the job with you. This uplifting attraction points out the standard of reaching out to others in need.
Finally, take a spin on The Eye - our new spinning flat ride that should disorient even the bravest of visitors.
Prepare yourself: a snow storm is on its way. Put on your 3D goggles and enter Grocery Grab - a ride that has participants trying to nab as much food and toilet paper as they can. "Shoot" the items on the screens to put them into your cart and raise you readiness score.
Cool off with snow-covered buildings. Brave the snow maze, a life-sized attraction that will have you lost in the trenches dug into giant snow drifts. Make it to the other end, past all of the dead ends, to survive.
Sunny Days and Star-Filled Nights Zone
Finally, you'll find yourself in the brightest area of the park. Here is where the sun always shines, the temperatures are always mild. Ride the Sunshine Wheel, play carnival games, ride the Surf Board. Enter the Planetarium Stage to experience the stars without the clouds and light pollution in an interactive, musical presentation for our youngsters. Then take them outside to our family area. Ride on the Sunray Carousel, the Spinning Ice Cream Cones, and meet The Sunshine Gang, our crew of costumed good guys. Climb rock walls and take a turn at our ropes course. Zip line. When the sun shines, just about anything goes!
Flood Zone Water Park
The pools in this park are different from other water parks. This time, the lazy river is through the flooded city. This time, the water slides empty into the flooded streets. Walk through the incredible Rainy Forest where it never stops downpouring. Or try your luck with our lazy river and explore the sunken prehistoric villages of America.