Good news for fans of the former Visionland and later Alabama Adventure amusement park - members of the Koch family, who up until recently ran Holiday World, have purchased the property with apparent plans for opening the amusement rides in the future.
As a bit of a surprise, Alabama's Splash Adventure water park - what's currently left operating of the original Visionland - changed their website today to show off Dan and his sister Natalie as part of the newly "family owned & operated" facility.
Dan Koch was recently involved in a legal dispute over the ownership of Holiday World, stemming from the death of his brother Will in 2010. Will's wife, Lori Koch, is now in control of the park, owning 60% of it. Dan still owns 40% but clearly has decided to move on and pursue leading another park - and it would seem his family has joined him. You can read a history of the legal battle, in short version, here.
Now with members of the Koch family (no official word on Pat as of yet) as owners of the park (technically through a company named Koch Parks, Inc), 2014 will also see the addition of five kiddie rides in the dry area and a Laser Maze - but that's not to say the whole amusement park will be open. That could come in time, but not this year.
The Koch family says in this article that they are excited to bring their decades of amusement park experience to Splash Adventure. The company purchased 89 acres of land to work with, and former owner General Attractions, LLC, kept 150 adjacent acres for development.
Much like at Holiday World, visitors will find perks such a free parking, free sunscreen, free inner tubes, and wifi. The park reopens for 2014 on May 17th.
If the plan is indeed to reopen the amusement park, there will be plenty of work required. Looking at a recent aerial shot of the property on Google, it seems that many of the park's former rides have already been ripped out. The two largest, a Boomerang coaster and the wooden Rampage coaster, are still standing however.