Recent press reports announced the start of construction on a world-class theme park in Myrtle Beach, SC. The intriguing part of this news is that the folks at Hard Rock Café are building it, and it will be a rock & roll themed attraction. Covering 150 acres and costing $400 million, Hard Rock Park is scheduled to open in spring 2008.
According to company executives, Hard Rock Park will be an “evolution of theme parks” and a place to “showcase some of the finest pieces of rock memorabilia.” Although it will be designed to appeal to the whole family, it will have a strong food and beverage component, including alcohol. Of course, it will have a large concert arena that will feature headline entertainment.
The announcement said Hard Rock Park would have six themed areas but did not give any details. Certainly, one of them would have to have an Elvis theme. If Disneyland has Fantasyland, Frontierland, and Tomorrowland, Hard Rock Park needs to have Elvisland.
It’s been fun thinking about a possible Elvisland and to imagine what Elvis songs and movie titles would lend themselves to rides and other attractions. Here’s my list:
Roller Coaster All Shook Up: This was just too easy. What could be better than “All Shook Up?” It certainly describes me after a roller coaster ride.
Flume Ride Kentucky Rain: Not too many Elvis songs mention water, but this would work for a ride where you get soaking wet.
Go Kart Course Speedway: All the female staff could wear short outfits and boots like Nancy Sinatra’s in the movie.-
Dark Ride Mystery Train: Dark Ride is park terminology originally used for things like haunted house rides, but it has evolved into spectacles like Pirates of the Caribbean and Indiana Jones. With “Mystery Train” the designers could do anything their imaginations conjure up.
Animatronic Ride Wild In The Country: That movie title didn’t refer to woodland critters, but the ride’s designers could come up with a kiddy ride that works with the theme.
Ferris Wheel Roustabout: The name may be a stretch, but there was a Ferris Wheel in the movie, and it had a part in one of the sub-plots.
Swing Ride Easy Come, Easy Go: The most popular swing ride is the pirate ship that arcs back and forth to ridiculous heights. “Easy Come, Easy Go” vaguely invokes an image of pendulum-like movement. The boat could be the Port Of Call, the sunken treasure ship in the movie.
Bumper Cars Spinout: That’s perfect.
Carousel Teddy Bear: This would work if the traditional horses are replaced with big cuddly bears.
Scenic Boat Ride Paradise, Hawaiian Style: Once again, the title leaves the door open for the designers to create just about anything.
Of course, if Elvisland is to have a stage show, here’s a natural:
Good Rockin’ Tonight.” One of the many shops could sell jewelry
and be called “Wear My Ring Around Your Neck.” And finally, one of
the restaurants could be called “Fried Peanut Butter and ‘Nanners.” It
probably should be an all-you-can-eat buffet.
In a year or two, we will return to this subject to see if there is an
Elvisland and whether any of these names are on the rides at Hard
Rock Park. Remember,you heard it here first.
© 2006 Philip R Arnold www.elvisblog.net