• Culture

The Creepiest Abandoned Roadside Attractions Ever

People love roadside attractions and theme parks, and why wouldn't they? There's the anticipation, the expectation, the excitement, the good old fashioned road trip fun! Today, visiting attractions in Orlando, California, and anywhere in between is nothing short of non-stop thrills. While you're there, no place on earth seems so full of life. But what of the shuttered theme parks and weird roadside attractions of bygone eras?

Time has passed by many roadside stops. Some travelers might find such sites creepy as they stand stand frozen in time. Dead roads leading to decaying structures and abandoned buildings crumbling in ruins. It doesn't take long for nature to overtake places that have been left exposed to the elements. Soon, the only visitors to these sightseeing stops are tourists seeking the strange, weird, and maybe ghosts. There's just something about looking at old abandoned tourist traps and deserted roadside oddities. Once symbols of the great American road trip, they now appear only as haunted, desolate, or just weird slices of retired Americana. From dinosaur statues to a bunch of giant busts of American Presidents, there are plenty of creepy abandoned sites to see.

 

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    Lake Shawnee Amusement Park: Rock, WV

    What does one do with a plot of land that has the dual history of being both the scene of a pioneer massacre and a burial ground? Why, build an amusement park there, of course! Chalk this one up to the worst idea in the history of... well, ever. In 1966, after two children were killed on its rides, Lake Shawnee Amusement Park closed forever, becoming the playground for no one but ghosts.

     

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    Holy Land, U.S.A.: Waterbury, CT

    Photo: Unknown / Wikimedia Commons / Public Domain

    For all of its purported holiness, the creepy quotient of the desolate and neglected Holy Land, U.S.A. seemed to be on par with that of hell. Closed to the public since 1984, the 18-acre religious theme park has long been rumored as haunted, but the 2010 rape and murder of a 16-year-old girl there sealed its legacy.

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    Prehistoric Forest Amusement Park, Irish Hills, MI

    Modern ruins are hella creepy, and even more so when they are littered with the fiberglass carcasses of forgotten dinosaurs. This theme park in Irish Hills, MI opened in 1963 to great fanfare, but was closed and abandoned in 1999.

     

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    Williams Grove Amusement Park: Mechanicsburg, PA

    Near Mechanicsburg, PA is Williams Grove Amusement Park. Or was, before it became the creepy and abandoned ruin it is today. A classic old amusement park, families first came to the site for picnics in the 1850s, with the first rides opening in 1928. The park, almost completely destroyed during Hurricane Agnes in 1972, closed for good in 2005. And there it has sat, ever since.
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