Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas


Today, Let’s Talk Mott’s, Mott’s Miniatures that is. Formerly housed in Jeffries Barn at Knott’s Berry Farm the Mott’s Miniatures collection/exhibit was a truly extraordinary experience. The exhibit consisted largely of dollhouse size displays themed around the history of American commerce and home life. These displays featured exquisite miniatures many of them antique and many of them made by the various members of the Mott family. Today’s post features a display from Santa’s kitchen, the photos and accompanying text are from a 1998 auction catalog.

“The preferred status of Christmas among all other holidays for the Mott family is patently evident in the intricately detailed Mrs. Santa’s Kitchen. Their extensive collection of Christmas miniatures originated with Allegra’s mother, who had earnestly collected Christmas ornaments throughout the years. Considering the fact that this piece was made during the years of 1975 and 1976, one can appreciate the time and effort spent collecting the fine Christmas treasures that comprise this marvelous exhibit. Represented here is a true combination of the old and the new. The kitchen that opens up through a beautiful stained glass door contains many antique pieces, including real enamelware plates, dishes, utensils, furnishings and the arcade doll house ice box which is made of iron. Also included here is an unbelievably small toy train set that really works, as well as a holly decorated porcelain clock, also fully functional. The apparently red brick oven, full of Christmas treats, was hand carved by Barbara Mott and is actually made of solid pine. It was made to look like brick by a method of using four coats of paint of different colors with the addition of sawdust and talcum powder to the last coat, adding the texturized look. Barbara also designed the miniature houses on the shelves above, as well as the cookies and dough. Santa’s busy elves were hand sculpted and made by Cynthia Baron. The mistletoe and Christmas wreath were created by the Mott’s great grandmother from shells and seed pearls. Wax miniaturist, Helen Cook, made most of the candies, while the tiny strings of tree lights were fashioned by Mr. Wilson.”

That’s all for today, Thanks for Readin’

Have a Merry Christmas!


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Toy Shop

Today we are heading over to the Ghost Town Toy Shop Peek-In, but first I need to give an update to my previous post. It looks like Ghost town has dodged another bullet as plans to move Demon Drop in Behind Boothill have been cancelled. Great news and a wise decision on the part of Cedar Fair.

Now that we have that out of the way let's head over to the Toy Shop in Ghost Town. The Toy Shop is a small peekin between the current Gun Shop and the Boothill Undertaker over in the back corner of Ghost Town near the BirdCage Theatre. Nothing really special about it but it is of course a welcome part of the peek-in family plus it made for a quick post.

Here is a peek inside. This mannequin looks more J.C. Penny than Claude Bell.
That's all for today. Take Care and Thanks for Readin'

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Charleston Square

I am not sure if it is still considered Charleston Square or not but today’s post features the area that leads from ghost town into what was the old Roaring 20’s section.

After learning of Cedar Fair’s plan to relocate an existing freefall ride to the former spot of the haunted shack (see for more info on that) I decided to get some photographs of this area as I suspect it will be in danger once the Bulldozer is fired up.

A closer look at the fountain

The old Roaring 20's sign on the roof of the former Knott's Beary Tales Building.

Looking back toward Calico Square

The Screamin Swing on the former site of the Hanunted Shack

To the right of the Screamin Swing is this fire station mural. It is actaully the stage door for the Good Time Theatre.

I believe this firetruck used to be parked on the side of the Haunted Shack where the fire station mural is now. It now operates shamefully as the 10 buck firetruck.

The ride that is coming to Knott's is called “Demon Drop” and is identical to a ride that was at Magic Mountain for 20+ years called “Freefall”. It is a tower drop ride that takes you up 10 stories and drops you down a track that curves at the bottom extending out several hundred feet from the tower to allow the ride vehicle to come to stop.

I do not know for certain that this area and most notably the beautiful fountain that is the centerpiece are in danger but by judging from the aerial photo below it seems that either this area or the area between Calico Square and the Mine Train will soon have the runway ramp from the newly installed “Demon Drop” running through it.

Not only will the tower be yet another steel eyesore on the skyline of ghost town but the shear size of it will certainly affect the sense of scale in that area making it seem even smaller and more a part of the outside world than it already does now. Add to that the fact that the runway ramp on this thing is going to have to go somewhere (either Calico Square or Charleston Square) and it seems destined to do some damage.

As a final note I noticed that the horse drawn hearses that used to sit across from the current location of Roy Bean’s Saloon have gone missing. I noticed this right before haunt started but did not get a picture until now.

Here is a shot of the Hearse’s before their removal. The larger hearse had an animatronic “stiff” that would raise it’s head periodically in an attempt to startle onlookers expecting the passenger to be “dead”. Just one of the good old fashioned Knott’s Berry Farm tricks that reminded me of the old days. Hopefully they are being refurbished, but I somehow doubt it.

These horse drawn hearses had been at the farm as long as I can remember. The smaller white one was for a child (kind of morbid, but classic)

I hoped that they were going to be given a more prominent location for the haunt but after looking around for a couple of months I have not been able to locate them.

That's all for today! Thanks for Readin'