On a recent trip to Eureka Springs, Arkansas, we came across a fascinating find — a former amusement park frozen in time. A sign still points to the park roadside. Once you get there, however, it’s evident that the park is long-closed.
The park, which opened in the 1960s, was once the largest dinosaur-themed park in the United States. It once covered 65 acres and had 100 live-sized dinosaurs. It was also known as John Agar’s Land of Kong and Farewell’s Dinosaur Park.
According to a post on http://www.abandonedar.com/, “The sculptures were created by Emmet Sullivan, who also designed the dinosaur statues in Dinosaur Park and Wall Drug in South Dakota, and the Christ of the Ozarks statue in nearby Eureka Springs, Arkansas. Two local men, A. C. McBride and Orvis Parker handled the actual construction of the dinosaurs.
“Along with the nearby Beaver Dam, a few of the park’s dinosaurs are featured briefly during the opening scenes of the 1969 horror movie ‘It’s Alive!’. The tyrannosaurus is featured in the 2005 film Elizabethtown and is shown on the film’s cover.”
The park sadly closed in 2005 and is now owned by an adjacent resort. We tried to gain access to the park, but the resort owner is an attorney and doesn’t allow anyone on the grounds anymore. Sadly, like so many abandoned structures, the park has fallen victim to vandalism. The former gift shop was burned to the ground in 2011, likely due to arson.
Today a few of the dinosaurs can be viewed from the road, which is where I obtained these pictures. (I did not enter the property, rather used a telephoto lens roadside). I did witness a few people hop the fence and walk into the park. Sadly, people who do this ruin access for the rest of us. Private property means one thing: stay out unless you have permission.
With that said, please enjoy the photos. It was so amazing happening upon this!