Six Flags New Orleans
Waking up at 7a.m., it wasn't long before I was into the rental car and onto I-10E towards Six Flags New Orleans.
The drive was interesting with all of the abandoned houses, apartment buildings and odd businesses. It wasn't complete devastation, but this is 5 years after Katrina and there was still widespread depression.
Eventually I would eye my target. Like a city emerging at a desert's end, the roller coasters and poles of Six Flags steadily crept out of the once-empty horizon.
This amusement park originally opened as Jazzland in the year 2000. In 2002, Six Flags offered the owners some money & it became Six Flags New Orleans.
As you can guess, Six Flags is another Katrina victim. A Times-Picayune article has a great picture showing what Katrina did to her: http://www.nola.com/business/index.ssf/2009/08/nickelodeon_to_build_theme_par.html
The park had water pumps and an all-encompassing 6 foot berm to keep water out. Unfortunately, the park area was inundated with 15 feet of water after the 20 foot storm surge smashed the area. This water filled the area on the other side of the berm, staying there for an entire month after the pumps failed.
The flood waters made it too costly to repair & too costly to demolish. The saltwater had did its damage to the metal and wooden roller coasters.
Six Flags insisted it would fix up the park soon, but this was only until 2008 came and the City of New Orleans fined Six Flags and ordered them to vacate their lease. This was in anticipation of a Nickelodeon park, but that deal also fell through & now the park sits in limbo, with a few amusement park companies kicking the tires and hmmming & hawwwing.
After the ticket booths, the first area is made up to look like New Orleans.
The buildings look interesting enough...
...but after cracking more than a few of the buildings, you discover that they're all gutted.
There was the odd interesting thing, but I eventually slacked on checking every empty building.
The welcome sign once you're past the pseudo French Quarter...
The next portion I went to was collapsed and next to the water. I was wondering about safety and sketchy spiders/snakes kicking around...
...but that collapsed deck ended up being about the only wood I walked on all day - the rest was cement.
This is the children's area...
The Krewe of Kreeps ride...
Walking along...the wooden Mega Zeph roller coaster stands in the background.
My boyyyyy commented on how fun it would be to climb...he can have fun with that one: according to Wikipedia, a large track section collapsed last year because of the decaying wood.
A lone snowy egret wasn't scared.
He didn't like me though...I crept up to get a better picture and he would fly around, before landing 40 feet down the roller coaster - and further from me.
The next section included some grandstands on a lake, with a pseudo beachfront village.
Most of the buildings were boring, holding those cheesy carnival games and maybe some hot dog stands...
This one empty building did have some fantastic graffiti though. It begs to wonder why dude would go out of his way to paint this here. Wouldn't it have been easier for him to just paint this on a local drainage ditch? Why would he have went out of his way to sneak in here with paint?
Nearby were some bumper cars!
Check another abandoned item off the list...
...and I couldn't simply artfag the dustiest, most photogenic bumper car.
Here is a panorama of the bumper car room.
For the purpose of making this story, I've tried to explain my pictures in chronological fashion...but in actuality, I walked the route around the park about 3 times and checked out things in a nonsensical fashion. It was warm and I was loving the t-shirt weather - memories of ice fishing jackets, toques and snow smashing me in the face back in Newfoundland, couldn't be further away.
Anyway, when I was fixing to leave, I climbed up to the top of one of the small rides. It was nothing substantial, but it provided a nice park overview...
I had been here about 4 hours already, but I still meandered about; realizing I would never be here again...
...it was during this time that I found a giant clown head! Oh ho ho!
I figured it was about time to get back to New Orleans, so that was that.
I left for my walk back and heard a little splash in a nearby ditch. When I walked over, this time I heard a LOUD splash!
That was enough nature for this city slicker. I didn't even wait around to see what made the splash.
Onto Day 4.
|New Orleans 2010|
Touristy Jazz, Algiers, My First Ever NBA Basketball Game.
Cemeteries & the World's Longest Bridge.
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