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I recently enjoyed a media preview day to see the grand re-opening of the Calico Mine Ride. The classic Calico Mine Ride, Knott’s first major attraction and theme park icon has undergone a top to bottom refurbishment that began in January of this year and includes dozens of new animatronic figures, state of the art lighting, audio and all new special effects.
I had never been on the ride before because I assumed it was a coaster ride. Whoops! It was simple and easy, think Pirates of the Caribbean at Disneyland, with a fun stroyline and characters throughout. Everyone was raving about it being a “dark ride”, I am not attracted to “dark rides”, I like light, I like to know what is coming next and be prepared for it. LOL
I think the grand kids will enjoy it, there is an explosion at one point that may scare them the first time. My only problem was with the cars that you ride in. The beches around the car are extremely low, this is not a very ADA friendly ride, or comfortable for TALL people like me.
From the Press Release:
The basis of the iconic attraction was a simple handshake agreement between Knott’s founder, Walter Knott, and theme park pioneer Bud Hurlbut in 1959. From that handshake emerged a first-of-its-kind “dark ride” with elaborate show scenes and full-sized human figures. The attraction was an instant hit with guests at its original November 22, 1960 opening, and earned back Hurlbut’s initial $1 million investment in less than two years. The groundbreaking attraction had a special place in Walter Knott’s heart, who worked in actual mines around the turn of the century in the Calico mining region of San Bernardino County before calling Buena Park home. Hurlbut worked tirelessly to incorporate authentic touches into the attraction. For the real stories of men who worked in the frequently dangerous mining world, he befriended actual miners and visited dozens of mining sites around California to observe the workmen, their tools and environment.
Knott’s Berry Farm’s Design Team, in partnership with Garner Holt Productions, Inc., has elevated Hurlbut’s 1960 design while preserving the original mining experience. Nearly fifty animatronic humans and dozens more animals populate the updated adventure, with more than 120 characters spread through classic and re-imagined scenes. New denizens of the mountain include an old miner just inside the first tunnel who will welcome guests into the Calico Mine and warn them of dangers that lie along the rails ahead. Despite the massive mining operation depicted inside the Calico Mine, since the attraction first opened, no character has ever actually found gold in the mountain. As part of the renovation, beginning June 14, one lucky miner will be seen striking it rich with gold in-hand!
New excitement is also coming to the “chain lift”, where trains will pass by a nervous miner carrying a canary in a cage for safety into the unknown diggings ahead. The animatronic canary is just one of many new animals coming to the attraction. Other wildlife will include a donkey, vultures, a playful dog, countless bats, and blind fish in the eerie Lake Room.
The attraction’s rustic wooden loading platform has been refreshed and now includes a “peek-in” similar to those found throughout Ghost Town, offering guests windows into the rich mining history of the 1850s on their way toward boarding the mine train car. A new guest and employee elevator has been installed to improve access to the attraction, especially for guests seeking ADA accommodations.
Guests will soon embark on the eight minute journey aboard fully refurbished, hand painted mining cars featuring new speakers and a digital amplification system, pulled by beautifully-detailed locomotives. Garner Holt Productions, Inc. installed a cutting-edge RFID playback system in the ride vehicles to play the all-new on-ride narration and audio effects through the crystal-clear digital system. “The spiel is based on the original 1960 script, and will have all-new points of interest and stories in the voices of three all-new character narrators so that each trip through the Mine will be unique,” explains Garner Holt, founder and president of the San Bernardino based Garner Holt Productions, Inc. “The updated script includes references to a number of real historic mining practices and personalities. The on-board audio narrator will also interact with animatronics and special effects in some scenes.”
The twisting, turning tunnels and expansive caverns were completely repainted, including a brilliant new color scheme in the spectacular “Heaven Room.” Here, guests will thrill to the glorious sight of the thousands of spectacular stalagmite and stalactites accompanied by the original musical score, which has been digitally re-recorded. Original special effects have been lovingly re-created, like real steam in the Bubbling Pots scene with its surprising steam geyser and tipping barrels and other effects in the Explosion Room finale.
The opinions in this article are my own. I do not work for, or with, any brand mentioned in this article, nor do
I have any official relationship with them. I have a relationship with GigaSavvy, for whom I create original editorial content.
When I first saw people tweeting about the new show Shark Tank back n 2009 I thought, ugh, I never liked “shark week” why would I watch this stupid show?
Then I saw what it really was.
Yes these sharks have teeth but deep down inside they are gentle as lambs. Original episodes air on Friday evenings, but now CNBC has back to back off-network episodes every Tuesday evening at 8 and 9PM.
Thousands of products have been brought before the sharks and only a select few have been chosen tobe invested in! I have a giveaway for you of a few of those products!
A Gobie reuseable water bottle with filter.
Park Barrel BBQ Sauce.
Nuts ‘n More Chocolate Peanut Butter.
Marzsprays ReBoot Spray Energy.
Origaudio Fold and Play Recycled Speakers.
All you have to do is fill out the RaffleCopter entry form below.
Disclosure: I received a box of goodies, in exchange for this post my contact is providing the prize for this giveaway. isn’t that nice of them? Let’s all tell them thank you!
Recently I was invited to a Media sneak preview of the new Camp Snoopy at Knott’s Berry Farm. Unfortunately it was not a family event so I didn’t actually go on any of the new rides. But Kathy will be taking the grand kids back in a couple of weeks so I will hopefully have good pictures of them soon.
When my kids were teens we went to Knott’s often. It was more affordable and less crowded than Disneyland and the kids loved all the rides. We never ventured over to Camp Snoopy because they were too old. My first real venture was with Caitlyn for her 7th birthday. She enjoyed some of the rides but was too big for others (and not quite big enough for the roller coasters of her dreams). it wasn’t really until last year taking the twins that we dived head first into all the fun that Camp Snoopy can bring. The kids had a blast, I had fun, but I couldn’t help but think that it really did feel like a “camp ground”. It was dated, dingy and dark.
It is such a welcome change that I was immediately excited to venture futher in to see what else was new.
There are 3 new rides for the kids. One that was replaced will be sorely missed by Matthew, he really loved the Charlie Brown Speedway.
The official descriptions are below, you can click on the titles to see my videos on Instagram:
- Charlie Brown’s Kite Flyer invites campers to “fly a kite” with Charlie Brown and soar above the land’s winding paths and babbling streams – but watch out for the kite-eating tree! This 32-passenger adventure allows guests to sit side-by-side on 16 swings for a spin that whisks riders up to 18 feet above the ground. As the tree rises, good ol’ Charlie Brown is revealed upside down and all tied up in kite string! Charlie Brown’s Kite Flyer has replaced Snoopy Bounce (I am so glad the bounce house is gone!).
Pig Pen’s Mud Buggies lets tykes climb aboard their very own all-terrain vehicle for an adventurous ride around the High Sierras. Six four-seater ATVs will spin, bounce, and bump up to 24 guests at a time, while Pig Pen looks on from his center perch. Pig Pen’s Mud Buggies has replaced Log Peeler.
Linus Launcher recreates that classic Peanut’s moment when Snoopy grabs Linus’ blanket and launches him on a wild ride. On Linus Launcher, guests lay on one of twelve “blankets” as they fly round and round. Up to 24 guests lay side-by-side while Snoopy launches them up almost 10 feet in the air. Guests will enjoy a Woodstock’s-eye view of Huff ‘n Puff, The Grizzly Creek Lodge, and all of Camp Snoopy below! Linus Launcher has replaced Charlie Brown’s Speedway.
There is also a new “park” area for resting and snacking, again, much brighter and cheerier than the area that was there previously.
I am so impressed with all of the changes, not just because they are providing my family with free passes (disclosure anyone?) but because it looks like someone took the time to dig deep and see what needed to be done and did it.
The opinions in this article are my own. I do not work for, or with, any brand mentioned in this article, nor do I have any official relationship with them. I have a relationship with GigaSavvy, for whom I create original editorial content.
This is my mom on the right and my Aunt Monica on the left, with their father in the middle.
All three were known for their smiles, I love how this picture captures them.
All three are now swinging together on clouds.
Ford Motor Company announced back in January, the C-MAX Solar Energi Concept, a first-of-its-kind sun-powered vehicle with the potential to deliver the best of what a plug-in hybrid offers – without depending on the electric grid for fuel.
Instead of powering its battery from an electrical outlet, Ford C-MAX Solar Energi Concept harnesses the power of the sun by using a special concentrator that acts like a magnifying glass, directing intense rays to solar panels on the vehicle roof.
The result is a concept vehicle that takes a day’s worth of sunlight to deliver the same performance as the conventional C-MAX Energi plug-in hybrid, which draws its power from the electric grid. Ford C-MAX Energi gets a combined best miles per gallon equivalent in its class, with EPA-estimated 108 MPGe city and 92 MPGe highway, for a combined 100 MPGe. By using renewable power, Ford C-MAX Solar Energi Concept is estimated to reduce the annual greenhouse gas emissions a typical owner would produce by four metric tons.
“Ford C-MAX Solar Energi Concept shines a new light on electric transportation and renewable energy,” said Mike Tinskey, Ford global director of vehicle electrification and infrastructure. “As an innovation leader, we want to further the public dialog about the art of the possible in moving the world toward a cleaner future.”
C-MAX Solar Energi Concept, which will be shown at the 2014 International CES in Las Vegas, is a collaborative project of Ford, San Jose, Calif.-based SunPower Corp. and Atlanta-based Georgia Institute of Technology.
Strong electrified vehicle sales
The C-MAX Solar Energi Concept debuts as Ford caps a record year of electrified vehicle sales.
Ford expects to sell 85,000 hybrids, plug-in hybrids and all-electric vehicles for 2013 – the first full year its six new electrified vehicles were available in dealer showrooms.
C-MAX Energi is Ford’s plug-in sales leader, with sales of more than 6,300 through November. Ford sold more plug-in vehicles in October and November than both Toyota and Tesla, and it outsold Toyota through the first 11 months of 2013. Plug-in hybrids continue to grow in sales as more customers discover the benefits of using electricity to extend their driving range.
C-MAX Hybrid over the last year has been a key driver in helping Ford sell more hybrids than any other automaker in the United States, second only to Toyota. C-MAX Hybrid continues to bring new customers to the Ford brand, with a conquest rate of 64 percent and drawing nearly half of its sales from import brands. Conquest rates are even higher in key hybrid growth markets like San Francisco, Los Angeles and Washington, D.C.
Breakthrough clean technology
SunPower, which has been Ford’s solar technology partner since 2011, is providing high-efficiency solar cells for the roof of Ford C-MAX Solar Energi Concept. Because of the extended time it takes to absorb enough energy to fully charge the vehicle, Ford turned to Georgia Institute of Technology for a way to amplify the sunlight in order to make a solar-powered hybrid feasible for daily use.
Researchers developed an off-vehicle solar concentrator that uses a special Fresnel lens to direct sunlight to the solar cells while boosting the impact of the sunlight by a factor of eight. Fresnel is a compact lens originally developed for use in lighthouses. Similar in concept to a magnifying glass, the patent-pending system tracks the sun as it moves from east to west, drawing enough power from the sun through the concentrator each day to equal a four-hour battery charge (8 kWh).
With a full charge, Ford C-MAX Solar Energi Concept is estimated to have the same total range as a conventional C-MAX Energi of up to 620 miles, including up to 21 electric-only miles. Additionally, the vehicle still has a charge port, and can be charged by connecting to a charging station via cord and plug so that drivers retain the option to power up via the grid, if desired.
After C-MAX Solar Energi Concept is shown at CES, Ford and Georgia Tech will begin testing the vehicle in numerous real-world scenarios. The outcome of those tests will help to determine if the concept is feasible as a production car.
By tapping renewable solar energy with a rooftop solar panel system, C-MAX Solar Energi Concept is not dependent on the traditional electric grid for its battery power. Internal Ford data suggest the sun could power up to 75 percent of all trips made by an average driver in a solar hybrid vehicle. This could be especially important in places where the electric grid is underdeveloped, unreliable or expensive to use.
The vehicle also reinforces MyEnergi Lifestyle, a concept revealed by Ford and several partners at 2013 CES. MyEnergi Lifestyle uses math, science and computer modeling to help homeowners understand how they can take advantage of energy-efficient home appliances, solar power systems and plug-in hybrid vehicles to significantly reduce monthly expenses while also reducing their overall carbon footprint.
The positive environmental impact from Ford C-MAX Solar Energi could be significant. It would reduce yearly CO2 and other greenhouse gas emissions from the average U.S. car owner by as much as four metric tons – the equivalent of what a U.S. house produces in four months.
If all light-duty vehicles in the United States were to adopt Ford C-MAX Solar Energi Concept technology, annual greenhouse gas emissions could be reduced by approximately 1 billion metric tons.
I haven’t been around much. I’ve been a little busy. Moving is done … ish. I still have a couple of boxes to empty and some stuff to arrange. But for the most part I am settled in.
The grand kids are here all weekend and some weeknights. I love having them, but there is only one problem.
I can’t afford a dishwasher right yet.
I grew up in a house with five kids during the 70′s and we always had a dishwasher. I never learned how to properly wash dishes.
I don’t like dishes to sit so I end up doing them multiple times a day, but in all honesty, I’m not very good at it. I have noticed bits left on some of the dishes and the pans still feel a little greasy afterwards.
Help me! What shouldn’t I be doing? I am using water as hot as the building allows, Palmolive detergent (dye and perfume free and hypoallergenic) and I rinse them in warm water. I always wash the pans last and let everything air dry.
So tell me – give me your tips and tricks.