Adventure Into The Creepy And Deserted Land Of Oz Amusement Park That Opens Once Each Year

By: Lydia Iseh | Last updated: Oct 26, 2023

Every urban adventurer’s dream is to explore the Land of Oz Theme Park. However, since its closure over four decades ago, the park has been left to the mercy of the elements and vandals.

Although the park’s diminished glory is a haunting sight, for fans of The Wizard of Oz, it is still a fun destination. Thankfully, there is now a chance for visitors to probe the eerie remains of this once-beloved attraction for two days every year. While the park may be in a state of ruin, its legacy as a beloved childhood memory still exists, alluring bold souls, including you, to explore its remains. So, let’s get started!

Land of Oz Theme Park Attracts Thousands of Visitors

The Land of Oz, in its prime years,  attracted massive crowds. During its first full summer, it welcomed more than 400,000 people, and it was not strange to see over 20,000 visitors in a day.

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Initially, the park was known for its Wizard of Oz-themed appeals and performances, but it closed in 1980 after many years of declining attendance.

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A Tour Through the Story

Unlike other traditional parks, Land of Oz was created to offer guests a unique experience of walking through the entire story of The Wizard of Oz.

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Source: Bambi Pig/ Flickr

The tour began at the farmhouse, where visitors would meet Aunt Em in the kitchen. Next, they would follow the yellow brick road, encountering various scenes and attractions from the tale. This impressive approach allowed visitors to engage themselves in the world of Oz and also become part of the story.

Land of Oz Theme Park Features a Tornado Experience with Dorothy

The Land of Oz Theme Park offers visitors an immersive tornado experience while in the kitchen. The tornado sound effects are played before the guests enter a shelter room. There, they can wait out the storm with one of the numerous Dorothy characters who work at the park.

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This unique experience adds to the prevailing magical experience of the Land of Oz, taking guests on a journey through the story.

The Tilted Farmhouse Experience

After the tornado experience, visitors are led to an exhibit to see a crooked version of the farmhouse, recreating the damage caused by the storm.

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The captivating exhibit adds to the realism of the experience, allowing visitors to feel like a part of the tale. The detailed attention throughout the park makes it a must-see attraction for lovers.

The Dark Corners of the Abandoned Castle: A Glimpse into the Wicked Witch's Lair

Although the theme park is home to a myriad of captivating sights, none are as foreboding as the abandoned castle. Located deep within the park’s grounds, the imposing fortress was once the Wicked Witch’s territory, bearing the marks of her dark magic.

Source: Bambi Pig/ Flickr

A striking feature of the castle is the witch’s lair, containing many sinister relics and trade tools. It is noteworthy that the castle is not just a place of terror but also home to some beautiful architecture in the park.

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Munchkin Village: The Smallest and Most Charming Part of the Park

The deserted Munchkin Village is one of the most adorable parts of the park. This miniature village is a destination for lovers of charming architecture.

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It is inevitable to imagine yourself as one of the Munchkins when walking through this abandoned Munchkin village. This village reminds every lover of the park of the power of imagination.

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Land of Oz Theme Park Features Ruby Slippers Exhibit

In addition to the blissfully mentioned experience, the park also features an exhibit of the ruby-red slippers famously worn by the Wicked Witch of the East.

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Along with a pair of striped stockings, visitors can be sure to catch sight of the slippers, just as seen in the classic film The Wizard of Oz.

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Abandoned Land of Oz Theme Park Still Has Yellow Brick Road

Despite everything, the theme park still retains its iconic Yellow Brick Road.

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The park has had several fire and vandalism incidents, but it remains on the bucket list of every urban explorer. The Yellow Brick Road, winding through the abandoned park, is worth seeing for visitors looking for an eerie experience.

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A Walk Through the Haunted Woodlands

If you’re looking for a jumpscare, then the woodlands are an attraction you should explore. Explorers tend to find unfamiliar and frightening creatures creeping in the shadows.

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Despite its eerie reputation, the haunted forest is a must-see for people from across the globe to experience its haunting beauty.

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Abandoned Land of Oz Theme Park's Showroom Retains Iconic Props

While some of the park’s structures are in disrepair, it offers a glimpse into its past, allowing visitors to get up close with some of the most iconic pieces.

Source: Giovanni Calabrese/ Flickr

The park keeps a collection of memorabilia from its past days. Among the items on display is one of Dorothy’s dresses, which will surely delight fans of The Wizard of Oz.

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The Iconic Centerpiece of the Emerald Mountain Project

The Emerald Mountain is the centerpiece of the Land of Oz Theme Park. Its unique green towers and sparkling facade are easily recognized by fans.

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For most visitors, the Emerald Mountain portrays the peak of the park experience. As visitors walk through the Emerald City, they are taken back to the world of the story. They can visualize themselves walking with the Scarecrow, the Tin Man, and Dorothy. The Emerald City remains an area of wonder and enchantment.

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Volunteers Create Emerald Mountain Project as Homage to the Park

In the 1990s, a group of volunteers came together to initiate the Emerald Mountain Project, which aimed to revive the park. This project, featuring replicas of the Yellow Brick Road, Emerald City, and many more, has grown since its existence.

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Compared to the Land of Oz Theme Park, the Emerald Project is undersized. However, it offers visitors a chance to experience a piece of the Land of Oz’s legacy. The Emerald Mountain Project reveals the enduring love for the park and its influence on those who visited.

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More Events Mean More Money

Thanks to the loyal volunteers of the Emerald Mountain Project, the park is gradually undergoing repair. While the park is not open to people daily, it usually opens for two days annually as a fundraiser to help sponsor its continuous repair efforts.

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During the annual events, visitors can explore the park’s attractions to see firsthand the progress made by the dedicated volunteers. Additionally, the annual openings reveal that fans look to preserve the park’s legacy for generations to come.

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The Power of Nostalgia: Why Fans Keep Returning to the Land of Oz Theme Park

The park continues to attract a loyal following of visitors and fans annually. What draws these people back despite its eerie and abandoned state, lies in the power of nostalgia.

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In addition to the emotional connections that visitors have towards the park, it also holds an amazing place in the wider cultural imagination. The park depicts a time when creativity and imagination were celebrated and people felt anything was possible.

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The Future of the Abandoned Land of Oz Theme Park

Many fans and supporters are working tirelessly to repair and preserve the park, as it continues to be a source of wonder for generations to come.

Source: Mike Legeros/ Flickr

With dedication and hard work, there is a cause to hope that the Land of Oz Theme Park will one day be restored to its former glory. And once again, a place of magic and enchantment for visitors across the globe.

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