Knott’s Brings Ghost Town to Life

GhostTown REVIEW Logo

Knott’s Berry Farm’s heart and soul, Ghost Town, is celebrating 75 years with adding some new additions to the park.

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GhostRider has had it’s 4,533 foot long layout completely retracked and given a new set of Millennium Flyer trains from Great Coasters International. Before the ride closed for the massive overhaul, it was brutal to ride. I’d get headaches from it! But this new version is absolutely wonderful. It’s much smoother and you still get the feel of a wooden coaster. With the removal of the mid course break run, you fly through the second half of the ride. I wasn’t a big fan of GhostRider before, but now it’s my favorite coaster in the park.

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Knott’s has completely removed the old Calico Square stage and replaced it with a beautiful park. When we visited, they weren’t quite finished, but should be in a few days. This park like setting will become a nice place to relax and take in the sights of Ghost Town.

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In the former location of the Screaming Swing is the new Calico Mine Stage. It is a much larger venue compared to the old stage across the train tracks. This new location helps pull the back section of Ghost Town together and is a nice centerpiece for the pathway in front of the Calico Mine Ride. A whole new show, Circus of Wonders, wasn’t open yet so we weren’t able to give it a review. However, the stunt show was opened, but unfortunately I didn’t get a chance to see it.

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A new tech and lighting booth next to the mine ride.

The Ghost Town and Calico Railroad has finished their 5 year refurbishment of locomotive 340 and it looks wonderful in it’s new coat of green paint. They even painted it’s name Green River back on it!

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The Pan for Gold has been relocated back to it’s original location in the front of Ghost Town. It’s a pretty fun experience and everybody strikes it rich!

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The Shootin’ Gallery has been remodeled with new props and animated effects.

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Ghost Town Alive is an interactive experience that pulls you into the daily lives of the citizens in Calico. You can go to the barbershop and get a painted mustache, become a citizen of the town and even vote for the mayor in the election. I was skeptical of this experience when it was first announced. Disneyland had a game in Frontierland a few years back and it was very confusing, and the guests helped shape the storyline. But in Ghost Town Alive the storyline is already created and you just play along by helping complete tasks for the citizens. The genius part of this is the story doesn’t reside on if you complete the task or not. This makes it much easy to play along and isn’t intimidating to new guests. I can not tell you how much fun this experience is, it is an absolute must do.

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Watch out for the Mayfield bandits!

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Catawampus!!!

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They have opened up the stable and you can pet the stagecoach horses.

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The Mayfields trying to take over Calico.

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You end the day with a lively hoedown! 

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And of course the Mayfields get arrested for their shenanigans. 

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Mrs. Knott’s Chicken Dinner Restaurant has gone under a massive remodel and is totally unrecognizable. The menu is still the same, but with all new decor and finishings. A bar and outdoor patio were also added. The remodel is a huge improvement, but I feel like it lacks some charm that makes Knott’s the park it is. Some simple changes like adding signs and pictures of the Knott’s family and showcasing the history of the farm would make a huge improvement.

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Instead of signs like “Friends and Family”, signage that gives homage to past would have worked much better. These changes could be done easily, signs and vintage photos shouldn’t be too hard to add.

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Less of this.

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And more of this. 

I’d love to thank the park for inviting us down for the day to enjoy the additions and the phenomenal presentations featuring park designers and Charles Phoenix. I highly suggest you go down to Knott’s Berry Farm this summer and take a look at their many new offerings. With the incredible refurbishments of the Timber Mountain Log Ride and Calico Mine Ride to the addition of the Iron Reef dark ride and family rides in Camp Snoopy and the Boardwalk and now bringing Ghost Town to life, Knott’s has been doing an incredible job at restoring the park back to its former glory.

 

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