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Posted - Nov 07 2017 :  10:51:13 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

I was amazed to stumble across this, so I want to share it with my friends.

This is a story of a company that, like many, started right here in my once-humble little town. No, Arrow Development did not manufacture bows and arrows, but rather amusement park rides and more. It turns out they were more wide-spread than I realized. I also discovered that they INVENTED the steel track roller coaster and the corkscrew loop, as well as perfecting the standard loop by making it a teardrop shape, eliminating the injury-causing excessive G-forces of older tracks.

As a kid and later as a teen, I remember a small business next to one of our outdoor drive-in theaters that always seemed to have some kind of small roller coaster track in their back area. I never did know much about them. Eventually they disappeared and the area was re-developed, including our last-remaining drive-in. Google has buildings there now.

I also remember my late mother telling me that, as a teenager in the early 1950s she saw the teacups for the Mad Tea Party ride at Disneyland being fabricated in a building just across the street from my first home on Jackson st. and Moffett Blvd., now an auto body shop. They even show my old street signs at the beginning of the film.

Turns out the teacup makers were the same business that made the coasters a few miles away, and they made much more than oversized fiberglass teacups. Apparently, Walt himself came to town several times....Sadly, I wasn't born yet...

Most of the rides they show in this video, I have ridden. They show Happy Hollow and Frontier Village, small amusement parks from my youth (the latter similar to Disneyland's Frontierland) and now closed). All the mentioned rides at Disneyland, the circling kiddie boat ride and the guide-track cars at Santa Cruz, the "Turn Of The Century" steel coaster at Marriott's Great America (now "Six Flags..." , the mine train coaster at Magic Mountain, even Danny The Dragon at Happy Hollow...I rode 'em all. It's like watch a home movie to me.

This video displays a big piece of my own memories, including my beloved Moffett Drive-in (I saw "Alien" and "Blazing Saddles" there just to mention a few). Man, I would have loved working at that coaster company. They had FUN! I hope you enjoy it even a fraction as much as I did, because even that would be a lot of pleasure.


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11792 Posts
Posted - Nov 11 2017 :  10:44:07 AM  Show Profile  Visit KC's Homepage  Reply with Quote  Reply WITHOUT a Quote
Cool story BD, thanks for sharing ;-}

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