One of my favorite films of all time is The Wizard of Oz.
Growing up, I loved watching this incredible movie because it really got my imagination going. Like many young children, I wished that I could visit Oz myself.
So when I found that there was a Wizard of Oz theme park, I knew I had to take a closer look. But things weren’t exactly as I expected…
“The Land of Oz” theme park has sat on Beech Mountain in North Carolina since it first opened in 1970. This park transported visitors straight into the fictional world of Oz.
However, today is a much different story. “The Land of Oz” now stands as a ghost town — with no sign of Dorothy, Toto, or any visitors at all. These photos of an empty Oz are striking, but also a little bit spooky. Not much is scarier than a completely abandoned yellow brick road…
Scroll through these absolutely incredible photos below to see “The Land of Oz” in its heyday, and the abandoned Oz that sits quietly on Beech Mountain today.
Special thanks to photographer Thomas Kerns for many of these haunting images.
Would you want to visit this abandoned theme park? Let us know in the comments below!
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These archival photos show "The Land of Oz" in its prime. The park was operational from 1970 to 1980, sometimes attracting 20,000 visitors each day.
The park featured rides, costumed characters, shows, and (of course) a yellow brick road!
But after a fire in 1976, as well as lagging attendance and a change in ownership, "The Land of Oz" officially closed in 1980.
These stunning photos show "The Land of Oz" as it is today, closed to the public and without a soul in sight.
Though in disrepair, the yellow brick road stretches throughout the park.
And while the Wicked Witch of the West is no longer scaring visitors...
...her castle still stands abandoned.
Even the Tinman is left to rust all alone.
The park now appears to be a spooky relic of what it once was.
For 363 days of the year, not a soul is in sight.
However, for one weekend every fall, the gates are reopened and visitors can explore what was once the great "Land of Oz." An event called the Autumn at Oz even features the characters taking a trip down memory lane.
But once the gates close after Autumn at Oz, "The Land of Oz" goes dormant once again.
Perhaps someday someone will breathe new life into the park and open it year-round. Until then, at least we have the movie!
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