Thursday, June 05, 2008

See what happens when you clean your thumbs?

Sadly there is no '3B'. The clipping has been misplaced. Shame really.

The newspaper clipping is looking at the facade of the row of buildings at the end of Texas Street, the workers are working on the base of the Ferris wheel. You can see the detail of the corner awnings and doors in the picture below and compare to whats left above.

It's definitely awesome to see the park in its construction phase, especially now that a lot has been destroyed.

I will never get the chance to get the picture I wanted to get, it would have been a "down Texas Street" shot of the park looking at what would have been the Ferris wheel. It's funny, I was freaking out about getting the flagpole perfectly straight in the shot (free handed) that I neglected to get the buildings to the right. They were the ones that burned to a crisp.

It's a bitter reminder whenever I head out to Horizon City to see friends.

Not that I dwell in the past, or anything.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I used to work there when the park fist opened up. I had gotten a job for the summer, after my freshman year at the University of Texas at Austin in the summer of 1984. I can remember that the owners, George Dipp and his henchmen ran the place in a very poor and nasty way. Kind of like a bunch of Miami Vice Mafia wannabes with no vision. The management team sucked. They couldn't do anything right. They made us, the park employees work long hard hours not doing the usual park work that park employees were supposed to do when working in at an amusement park but we were doing very hard manual labor construction work 7 days a week 14 and 16 hours a day for months on end in the hot summer El Paso sun for not a lot of money, trying to get the site set up for its grand opening on the fourth of July. The kind of work that were doing is the kind of work that professional construction workers should have been doing, not unqualified park employees, most of whom had never worked in the building, construction trades. The management team was too cheap to hire a qualified construction crew to do all of the manual labor and work that was needed to be done so they foisted it off on all of us to do. Consequently many of the buildings, amusement venues etc, were not built and constructed properly. It was a mess. I finished my three months there and I couldn't wait to get the hell out of that place and go back to school at the University of Texas at Austin. Anyhow, after about 3 or 4 months after leaving Magic Landing, I got a call from a Lawyer at home in Austin, Texas who told me he was representing the family of the guy who was killed on the roller coaster ride. The lawyer guy asked me if they had any proper safter classes or trained saftey personnel onsite who know how to administer any type of first aide. I told him no there wasn't anything like that while I was there. He asked me if we had attended any safety classes on industrial saftey of anykind and I told him no. Anyhow, I heard later that the lawyer busted George Dipp's financial cajones big time and I for one couldn't have been more happy. It couldn't have happened to a nicer guy!

6/07/2008 3:00 PM  
Blogger bailey337 said...

I stumbled across these blogs earlier today and decided to read every blog here, took me close to 2
hours. Great site! I myself, was a bit too young to remember Magic Landing, my mother has a picture of me on the Rainbow ride when I was about 2 or 3, thats really all I remember. I do remember, however being able to see the park from the road as we drove along I-10. For years I have hoped they would resurrect this park. I think El Paso would be a perfect place for a theme/amusement park. It has nice weather so it could be open 365 (and not close in the winter months like parks up north) plus so much vast land out there, and it would open up more jobs. Is there ever a chance of opening it in the future? Obviously EVERYTHING would have to be torn down and rebuilt, but it can be done. And about the tragidy, there have been deaths at Walt Disney World and they never closed, in fact, business there is still booming. Can you imagine if EL Paso wasnt just "the passing though" city anymore? Guests could stay for a few days and enjoy it. Being born and raised there, I know there is not much to do or see, so I would love to see Magic Landing rebuilt!!

-former El Pasoan living in Orlando, FL

6/08/2008 9:30 PM  
Blogger bailey337 said...

Oh, why are photos so hard to find? I have tried googling photos and cant seem to find any of that park in its heyday.

6/08/2008 9:31 PM  
Blogger The Archivist said...


Photos are harder to find at Magic Landing due to the fact that it was only open for such a short period of time, more people I am finding have had photos taken at Western Playland more than this place.

Popularity-wise, Magic Landing was the newcomer, the upstart. People gravitated more towards a much more extablished park like Western Playland where there was more shade, more grass and better areas to keep cool in the blistering sun.

Lets face it, they built ML in a very inhospitable part of the city.

6/10/2008 10:12 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Magic landing is no longer in such an inhospitable part of the city. The far east side has really grown and continues to do so. Everyone's excited about the county/city giving tax cuts so that the old Farah building can be turned into another shopping center. Many citizens of El Paso are all for it because "there's nothing to do in El Paso". We already have Cielo Vista Mall, Sunland Park Mall and the Outlet Shoppes of El Paso. We do not need another shopping center! The new Western Playland in Sunland Park is incredibly boring. Especially considering this latest fire at Magic Landing (in Febuary of 2009), revitalizing ML and really turning it into the Disney Land of the Rio could really be a boost for El Paso. Not to mention many El Pasoans are upset w/ the county for losing Western Playland. There are lots of things to do in El Paso, if you enjoy shopping and dining out. But for other recreational activities, not so much. If Magic Landing came back, and was done right, it would be awesome.

2/22/2009 10:26 PM  

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