There’s an amazing Wizard of Oz theme park in North Carolina. But you’ve probably never heard of it, because much like Oz itself, it’s not so easy to visit.
To get to Oz as we know it from the movies and books, you need to throw yourself into a tornado and hope for the best. Thankfully that’s not the case for this theme park. But it’s still pretty inaccessible, mostly because it only opens to the public once a year.
Wait, once a year? How does a theme park exist that only opens once a year?
Well, it wasn’t always that way. Back in 1970, it was one of the most popular theme parks in the United States, second only to Disney. Apparently it was originally built as a diversion for ski resort employees during the off-season, and eventually became a full-fledged park.
But the glory days didn’t last, and about ten years later, the Land of Oz theme park had to close its gates.
Is it just me, or is there something inherently creepy about abandoned theme parks?
These days, it is mostly visited by trespassers, and only opens once a year — every autumn, to be precise, for a day of nostalgia called “Autumn at Oz”, when the public can come and check out what remains of this cool and somewhat sad theme park.
This guy’s short video about Autumn at Oz strikes the right balance between the creepiness, sadness, and coolness of this abandoned place:
That looks, uh, interesting, let’s say.
So if you’re in the Carolinas later this year, you’ll have a rare opportunity to walk the yellow brick road. Of course, if you’re really dying to see the place, you can also rent it for an event.
That’s tourism in the Carolinas for you. And they wonder why people just drive through there on their way to Florida.