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O.C. BUSINESS PLUS | ORANGE COUNTY BRIEFLY

Knott's Forced to Pull Back on Bungee Ride

February 15, 2001|Bonnie Harris

Knott's Berry Farm in Buena Park said Wednesday that it has scrapped plans to build a $2-million bungee jump-like ride, which was to replace the park's 46-year-old Haunted Shack attraction.

The Skycoaster ride, one of 90 worldwide, was planned to help reshape Knott's as a modern thrill park. It was scheduled to open this summer.

But the Knott's ride would compete with the same ride at Six Flags Magic Mountain, and Knott's learned that the Valencia park would exercise its exclusive rights to the ride for a 100-mile radius. Buena Park is about 60 miles from Six Flags.

"They didn't leave us much choice," Knott's spokeswoman Dana Hammontree said. Knott's has not yet decided what it will put in place of the Haunted Shack, she said.

In anticipation of the new ride, Knott's tore down the Haunted Shack, a walk-through attraction featuring optical illusions that officials deemed too expensive to repair and upgrade for wheelchair access. When it closed in November, general manager Jack Falfas said that the dusty old shack was no longer popular and "just wasn't a good fit anymore."

The Skycoaster ride would have accounted for about half of $4 million in capital improvements planned for this year, including picnic shelters, restrooms and shops.

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