Frightmares continued to draw large crowds through the final weeks of the 2017 season. This year’s most popular new attraction, Seance, consistently sold out – even when extra times were added.
Even though the season was winding down there was still a lot of changes going on behind the scenes. Log Flume’s new siding on the lift hill was completed. An interesting little structure was added near Cannibal with a reconfigured curb.
Hydro-Luge, which was only open for about a month toward the end of the summer, was slowly being taken apart starting around the middle of October.
Toward the end of the month, Centennial Screamer closed and soon more and more of the ride was dismantled until it was completely removed. The rumor is that the ride will be relocated to make room for new south end restrooms.
No doubt this off-season will bring about a lot of new changes and surprises for the 2018 season.
Frightmares began on September 15 this year with many changes and additions. New offerings for Frightmares this year include Malevolent Mansion and tweaks to existing walk-throughs and shows. Some rides received a bit of decorating here and there like Speedway, Jr. and Wild Kingdom Train. Even Log Flume and Rattlesnake Rapids have a hint of Halloween. But the dark horse this year was Séance. Night after night, shows were selling out – even when extra shows were added. The new experience was housed in part of the old Patio Gardens building, north of Game Time.
Anyone who wasn’t aware of the new restrooms near Cannibal will have a hard time missing the new “spinning toilet” completed this month. The illuminated toilet opens and shuts its lid as it spins around.
As summer flies by, Lagoon continues to hold events and make changes around the park. Here’s what happened in July:
A week-long celebration for Terroride’s 50th anniversary was held in the middle of the month. During the week, there were discounts on admission and free collectible pins for the first 50 guests each day. A new limited edition t-shirt designed by local artist, Robin Banks, was also made available. On July 14th, there were treats and a special Terroride cake on display in front of the ride for what was considered to be its grand opening. Guests keep lining up despite long waits and delays. The line has been at least as far as the exit turnstiles for Roller Coaster.
Three rides at the north end haven’t opened yet this season. One of them, Hydro-Luge, finally re-opened on July 15th. Samurai and Catapult remain closed for now.
During the following week, a new mural by SRIL (Shae Petersen of Salt Lake City) appeared on the wall above the entrance to Game Time. Other smaller updates took place as well, such as this new sign for the gas station at Speedway, Jr.
Toward the end of the month, the front steps of the 49-year-old Opera House were torn out. The wooden stairs were rotting so it’s likely they are just being replaced to match the great new paint job the building received last fall and winter.
COMING IN AUGUST
The Frightmares trailers have already been pulled out to unload pieces of the spook alleys for the Davis Pavilion, reminding us that summer is almost gone. Daily operation will end for this season on August 22nd and then Lagoon will only be open weekends until October.
On June 9th, the new “re-imagined” Terroride finally opened. It’s been getting a lot of good reviews and there is now a pretty good line of guests waiting for it to open each morning.
Later in the month, Julie Freed appeared on KUTV’s Person 2 Person. She spoke about her grandfather Peter Freed and how they plan for the future. You can watch the interview with bonus online footage on the KUTV website.
New additions to the park include the King Of Thrones game in the old Hi-Roller location next to Drown The Clown. Also, the new night show Verano, opened on June 3rd and continues nightly (except Tuesdays) through August 27th.
COMING IN JULY
Will Samurai re-open soon? Will there be a special celebration for Terroride’s 50th birthday?
Although Lagoon wasn’t open daily in May, there were busloads of school kids streaming through the park during many weekdays as well as national dance championship contestants during the first three weekends. Here’s a rundown of what happened in May:
A new 30-second TV spot was released
The Campground opened for the season on May 5
The Spider opened with a new computer system on May 6
A new Zeppe’s location opened near Colossus: The Fire Dragon on May 12, which was also the annual USU Physics Day
On May 27, Lagoon-A-Beach opened and the new day show, Jungle Rhythm began
Other improvements include new wood siding on the Log Flume, and changes to the front of Game Time where the old latticework from the early ’80s was removed
The new north restrooms look very close to opening
Rides that have not yet opened in 2017 include Catapult, Hydro-Luge, Samurai and Terroride
COMING IN JUNE
June promises to be a big month for Lagoon with a lot of media attention and the beginning of the regular season on Friday, June 2…
The June issue of Salt Lake Magazine features Lagoon with some old employee stories and trip-planning strategies.
The arrival of Spring has brought with it the opening of Lagoon as well as the usual volatile weather patterns. Occasionally, the warm, sunny days have coincided with Lagoon’s weekend-only pre-season operating schedule.
Although March 25 was rainy and cold and many rides were closed, there were several visible changes since last fall and new additions in progress. Here’s what happened in the first few weeks since opening day:
The repainting of the Opera House is now complete
Wild Kingdom’s train station has been repainted
Grass and other improvements have been added to the kangaroo pen
The Creekside Terrace has finally been finished
Lockers have been placed at Rattlesnake Rapids on the north side of Rattlesnake Grub
A new mural appeared on the building which houses some games and Coca-Cola Plaza
Flying Tigers & Ruka Safari opened on April 8
The annual Easter Egg Hunt was held on April 16
A new food stand opened in Pioneer Village on April 22 selling Navajo tacos & funnel cakes
Samurai has received some new paint and was slowly being re-assembled during the first part of April, but has yet to open
Catapult remains closed, so far
The Spider has a new electrical building, but has only been seen testing and not operating
The old ape and the giant rat from Terroride have been placed inside Dracula’s Castle (and the last scene seems to have been removed)
New north restrooms are still under construction
Cliffhanger is currently in the middle of being repainted
The old Plinko game building east of Colossus is rumored to become home to another popular local franchise
COMING UP IN MAY
The campground opens May 5
America On Stage National Dance Championships will be held at Lagoon on the first three weekends in May
Lagoon-A-Beach opens May 27
New entertainment begins May 27
And of course, the highly-anticipated, “re-imagined” Terroride has yet to swing open its doors
The end of October brought the end of Frightmares as well as the end of an eventful 2016 season.
Crowds showed no signs of slowing down, especially on Saturdays. Perhaps the mild weather had something to do with it. Attendance reportedly reached record-breaking levels in mid-October.
Dinosaur Drop returned around the middle of the month, but something else disappeared around the same time. It wasn’t as noticeable as a missing ride, but it was fairly large. The Lagoon signs on top of The Rocket were removed, but the reason why is unknown at this point.
UPDATE: The signs were just being repainted and were put back in place in December.
The Frightmares Half Marathon/10k/5k, which was cancelled last year due to lack of participation, went off without a hitch on October 15th. You can see results here.
Progress has continued on the new east restrooms. They will most likely be ready next spring, replacing the current east restrooms which were 30 years old this year. Construction on what looks like some kind of small structure was spotted near The Spider between the queue and the ride enclosure, just north of the castle. We’ll probably have to wait until spring to see what it’s for.
Lagoon Today! gained many followers this year, especially on Instagram and Facebook. Thanks to everyone who followed, liked, retweeted, etc. I hope you enjoyed the updates, news and insights into events at the park.
Another month has flown by and we’re now in the final month of the 2016 season. September was a month of transition from daily summer operation to weekend operation, cooler weather and Frightmares! Here’s what else happened in September.
The car show returned to Lagoon on Labor Day weekend after a few years without the annual tradition. Cars were on display all around the North Midway on the 3rd.
Dinosaur Drop was inexplicably removed during the first week of September. Ladybug Bop continues to operate, but it’s unknown why Dinosaur Drop was removed. It’s been spotted behind Lagoon’s Annex office, sitting on a flatbed trailer.
Frightmares began on September 16th with a new haunted house in Pioneer Village called Frightening Frisco and a new show – Into The Dark.
Minor excavation work has been underway north of Sky Scraper and Samurai, sparking some rumors as any kind of construction work at Lagoon will do. It may not be as exciting as a new ride, but employees have confirmed that it’s for a new restroom. Still, the location has left some wondering about further development north of the existing park boundary in the future.
Some other updates to the park include repainting of The Bat, the reintroduction of the History Wall west of OdySea, and a few new additions to existing Frightmares walk-throughs including a new entrance to Fun House Of Fear.
Lagoon-A-Beach closed for the season on the 10th. Hydro-Luge and Scamper Bumper Cars are closed during Frightmares in addition to Dinosaur Drop as mentioned earlier and Catapult, which hasn’t opened all year.
Rain and windstorms swept through the area on the 22nd and 23rd. Luckily, there was not any notable damage at Lagoon and the park even opened on the night of the 23rd to those who were willing to ride in the rain to avoid crowds.
Nightwalk made the news on the 24th after one of the large Grim Reaper props started on fire. The Farmington Fire Department credited the employees that night for quickly evacuating the area, keeping the fire from spreading and making it easy for fire crews to reach the fire in a timely manner. Nightwalk re-opened soon after and both Grim Reapers have now been removed.
For three years in a row now, Lagoon has increased the admission price at the beginning of Frightmares. Regular admission has increased two dollars to $55.95 while senior citizen and youth admission has remained the same.
Coming up in October is the Frightmares Half Marathon/10k/5k with a course winding through Farmington and inside the park itself. You can sign up at FrightmaresHalf.com.
August is over, kids are back in school and summer seems to have come to a complete stop. But there are still two months left before Lagoon closes for the year and there has still been a lot of activity at the park.
A new gift shop opened in the newly re-purposed game building near Rattlesnake Rapids on August 1st. One the same day, work began on Pioneer Pavilion to prepare it for a brand new walk-thru for Frightmares! According to the official website, it will be called Frightening Frisco.
During the first weekend of the month, American Coaster Enthusiasts (ACE) held their Preservation Conference at Lagoon. This gave Lagoon a chance to show off the park to people from across the country who have visited many parks and ridden hundreds of coasters. Each member who attended donated to the group’s preservation fund which will help ensure a long life for Lagoon’s Roller Coaster.
Daily operation ended August 23rd. Lagoon had an open casting call for extras in next year’s commercials with filming on August 30th and September 1st.
Both summer shows, Let’s Dance and Any Way You Want It will have their final performances at Carousel Theater on Sunday, September 4th. Lagoon will now be open weekends only, with the exception of Labor Day and the UEA fall break in October. Hours of operation will be changing a lot, so keep an eye on Lagoon Today! for updates.
Meanwhile, work has been progressing rapidly to prepare the park for Frightmares, opening Friday, September 16th and Bonneville Classic Chevy will hold a car show inside the park Saturday, September 3rd.
As we pass the halfway point of the 2016 season, there are still plenty of new updates and changes at Lagoon.
At the beginning of the month, the billboard south of Lagoon off of I-15 was changed once again to a very simple, yet bold design.
The biggest event of the month was the celebration of the park’s 130th anniversary on July 15th. During the week there were promotions and live television broadcasts from the park by KUTV and Fox 13.
Kids Heroes Foundation was at the park early in the morning on Monday the 11th to raise money by traveling the equivalent of a 5K on Lagoon’s Roller Coaster.
On Friday the 15th, Big Budah from Fox 13 was at the park all morning including the ceremony presenting the new commemorative gazebo on the North Midway right after the park opened at 11am. A special cake was displayed inside the gazebo topped with a moving carousel. Guests had the opportunity to write birthday wishes on a wall in front of Game Time and at 5pm, cookies and drinks were served near the gazebo.
Unfortunately that day, technical problems forced the cancellations of all the shows at Carousel Theater for a few days and The Spider closed for almost two weeks. It reopened the night of Saturday, July 30th.
There has been light construction work going on in Rattlesnake Rapids Plaza where the old Rising Waters game building was converted into a gift shop.
There are also still more buildings getting fresh coats of paint in Pioneer Village including the Photography Studio. Towards the end of the month, carpet was added to the floor of the sundeck at the south end of Lagoon-A-Beach.
Temperatures have been hovering around the 100 degree mark for most of the month, sometimes going a little over, making all of the water attractions even more popular.
Discounts on all day passports were available for Independence Day weekend, Pioneer Day weekend and for a few days around the time of the birthday celebration in the middle of the month.
August will be busy as more people plan last minute trips to the park before school starts again. On the bright side, temperatures should start to cool down after the first week or two. Frightmares is also coming soon and work has already begun on something new for this year.