Did You Know There’s an Amusement Park 2 Hours From Midland/Odessa
Did you guys know that we have an amusement park just a couple of hours away from us? We do, and not just the remains of what was once an amusement park, a park that is still in operation.
The Joyland Amusement Park, located in Lubbock, Tx, has been around since the 1940's. The park started out in the late 40s, 1948 I believe, as Mackenzie Park Playground. Sadly by the late 1960's the area the facility was located, as well as the park itself, was falling into ruin.
Cut to a family well versed in the business of amusement. Seriously, this family had rides at the Wonderland Park in Amarillo, Cliffs Amusement Park in Albuquerque, Funland Park in Wichita Falls and arcades located in the Amarillo area for years. The Dean family had been hoping for the opportunity to bring back the park to it's former glory, and in 1973 they got their chance.
Jimmy and Katie Dean bought the Mackenzie Park Playground in 1973 at a time when the park was in need of tons of work and renovations but luckily they were up to the task. The first order of business was to let the public know that it wasn't the run down amusement park they remembered.
The decision was made to change the name to Joyland Amusement Park. When the park reopened in 1973 there were 13 rides and it has steadily grown since then. Now the park boasts 30 rides and attractions.
Currently the park is in it's second generation of family operation with David Dean being involved in operations, maintenance and management since 1973, and is currently the president of the corporation.
The park has water coasters, roller coasters, junior rides, one of my absolute favorite features which is a 1905 colorful carousel...if you don't get why that's such a big deal it's because carousels, 1905 or other, are a very rare site in the US.
This is a family friendly, fun and safe environment that's just a couple of hours away. You could easily take a day trip to the park if you wanted.