Long Lost Proposed CCI Concept Coaster For Bell’s Amusement Park Rediscovered!
Over the course of the last few weeks, we have presented several coasters from our new series “Lost Concepts”. From Kings Island’s Cat and Mouse, to Fiesta Texas’ TOGO creation, these lost concepts are rides that were proposed to parks, but were not selected or built. This week’s feature is a ride that was selected, but due to city politics, the ride and the park were both quickly brought to an end.
From 1951 to 2006 Bell’s Amusement Park thrilled residents of Tulsa, Oklahoma. The park was located at Tulsa’s Expo Square, part of the Tulsa County Fairgrounds. In the mid 1990’s Bell’s wanted to expand the amusement park into an adjacent lot of the fairgrounds to generate more revenue. A new wooden roller coaster was the centerpiece of the expansion project. Coaster manufacturer CCI was contacted to design a coaster that was double in size of the park’s beloved Zingo coaster.
Photo courtesy Bell’s
The new CCI coaster was designed as a bootleg out-and-back coaster featuring 10 airtime moments. Two hills were designed to travel underneath a road that ran perpendicular to the coaster itself. It offered many of the standard CCI elements such as under-banked turns producing lateral g-forces, as well as quick directional changes. The ride would have certainly been a crowd favorite for guests and coaster enthusiasts alike.
After 55 years, the Tulsa County Fair Board did not renew the parks lease for 2007. During the parks last years of operation, a lengthy and expensive 11 year legal battle over building the new roller coaster was still taking place, and in the end, the park won the case. By that time CCI had become a defunct company, but the Bells family still had plans to expand their park. After a complicated battle with the fair board, Bell’s was forced to relinquish its position within the fairgrounds and close the amusement park at the end of the 2006 season. They were given just 6 months to vacate which happened to be in the middle of winter. The rides were dismantled and placed in two un-air conditioned warehouses near downtown Tulsa. They searched for locations and negotiated deals to reopen around Northeast Oklahoma, but it was never rebuilt.
Even though the CCI coaster never became a reality at Bell’s, we used the proposed plans to recreate it! Take a virtual ride right now!
On September 12, 2019, Bell’s Amusement Park re-activated their official Facebook account and announced that there are plans for the theme park to come back soon, but the place and location would be announced in the fall. However, the question of where it will be is yet to be determined. Bell’s President, Robby Bell said in a statement regarding the announcement:
“We’re not gonna talk about much more detail about it just yet because there’s too many non-disclosures and stuff like that out there. We can only roll this stuff out when it’s ready to be rolled out. One thing that is certain is we’re putting it back up, it’s just a question of where”.
On November 12, 2019, Bell’s released the following video announcing the park is negotiating with two locations.
No announcement has been made as to if or when Bell’s Amusement Park will open. For more information about Bell’s Amusement Park, visit their official facebook page by clicking here.
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