MAGIC SPRINGS & Crystal Falls
Hot Springs, Arkansas
Owned by CNL Lifestyle Properties
Managed by Amusement Management Partners, LLC (ARM)
Park News - (2/9/16) One of our readers drove by Magic Springs the other day and confirmed that, as rumored, Dr. Deans Rocket Machine is either down, or in the process of coming down, as it was no longer visible from the road. So for those keeping track, the park will now feature two less rides than before for the 2016 season with the removal of Dr. Dean’s Rocket Machine and Wild Thang. Meanwhile, nothing new at all (thus far) has been reported to be coming to the park for 2016 either, which is starting to make the park’s fans wonder about the future of the park. After all, it was only a couple of years ago when the park announced they had sold off their newest coaster (X Coaster) to a new owner, only to discover that the coaster had been mostly welded together, rather than simply bolted together, which would make the job of taking it apart with the intention to rebuild it elsewhere a far more difficult situation than it is worth, so it remains at Magic Springs.
While I have received no information (official or unofficial) so far from anyone with true insight into what the park’s management has in store for the park, it seems clear to me that the park’s future will be primarily as a waterpark destination and not as a mixed amusement park / waterpark combo. We’ve seen this sort of evolution happen elsewhere in the south, specifically over at Alabama Adventure which went from being a mostly amusement park with a small waterpark, to just being a waterpark only (Alabama Splash Adventure) for several years. Only now, under new ownership, is Alabama Splash Adventure, in the early process of starting to add hard rides back to the park with last year’s reopening of the Rampage roller coaster.
Meanwhile Magic Springs seems to be headed towards that same kind of concept, that will see the park transformed into being primarily a waterpark, but with a few dry rides, coasters and upcharge attractions thrown in for a mixture. The park’s own history of expansion also backs up this theory over the past decade, with the last big steel ride added being X Coaster back in 2006. Every other attraction added since then has either been an upcharge attraction (SkyShark in 2014) or an addition to the waterpark: Crystal Lagoon (2007), Rapid Falls Raceway (2008), Boogie Blast (2010) and Splash Island (2013).
So far the only rumor about the park’s next expansion will be for another waterpark project to take up the site of Dr. Deans and Wild Thang. So far my theory is looking fairly solid.
(1/28/16) Looks like there has been some conflicting information going around regarding the fate of certain attractions at Magic Springs. According to the latest bits of information sent my way, my initial report was correct and the Wild Thang (Zamperla Power Surge) is said to have already been removed from Magic Springs and is being transported to Frontier City.
Meanwhile, I've also been told that the nearby S&S tower ride, Dr. Dean's Rocket Machine, is also in the process of being removed from the park as well and will be sent to another CNL owned park property. I'm guessing either Wild Waves, Pacific Park or maybe Elitch Gardens. (If anyone knows more, please let me know)
The area opened up by the removal of these two rides will be used for a new waterpark expansion... though I'm not sure if expansion will be ready for 2016 or 2017.
2016 - Nothing is known at this time...