Rainbow's End (theme park)
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|Slogan||N.Z's Premier Theme Park|
|Location||Manukau Central, Auckland, New Zealand|
|Owner||Rainbow's End Theme Park Limited|
|Area||9.3 ha (23 acres)|
Rainbow's End is a 9.3 hectares (23 acres) theme park in Auckland, New Zealand that opened in December 1982. The park, wholly owned subsidiary of New Zealand Experience Ltd, is currently New Zealand's largest theme park. The park currently employs between 50 and 200 staff both full-time and part-time depending on the time of year.
Opened in 1982 on the site of a former skate park, the park extended its lease in 2010 for another 24 years, after 5 years of discussions with the former Manukau City Council, though it will have to reduce its size by 0.4 ha from 9.3 ha to allow for new construction at the nearby law courts (being compensated for the land lost). The agreement with the Council also commits the company to re-invest $3 million every three years into new rides or upgrades.
- Ride History 
- 1982- Park opens with the Bumper Boats, Mini Golf, Can Am Cars, Mirage Cars and video games.
- 1983- Cinema 180, Pirate Ship, Maze and the indoor play area open.
- 1984- Log Flume and Dodgems open
- 1985- Kiddies Cars and Space Shuttle Zim Zam Zoo Playground open
- 1986- Coca-Cola Corkscrew Coaster opens
- 1992- Motion Master opens
- 1993- Family Karts replace Mirage Cars
- 1995- Gold Rush opens
- 1996- Car wash Convoy opens
- 1997- Castle Land open with Dragons Flight rollercoaster and Carousel (Known as Cadbury Land Castle until 2012)
- 1998- Log Flume set on fire by arsonists in June. Ride reconstructed and rethemed before reopening as the Enchanted Forrest Log Flume
- 2001- Fear Fall opens
- 2004- Power Surge and Jumpin Star open
- 2008- Ferris wheel inside the cadbury land castle is closed after the death of a maintenance worker after they got caught in the ride mechanism
- 2009- Invader opens
- 2012- Dragons Flight removed from Castle Land. Castle Land reopens as Kidz Kingdom with 3 new rides: choco express, surf and swing and magic bikes. Happy Feet replaces Journey to the centre of the earth in the motion master
Current Rides and attractions
Its main attraction is New Zealand's only Corkscrew Roller Coaster. A new ride, called The Invader, opened on 11 December 2009. It is located next to the Power Surge and opposite the Corkscrew roller coaster.
- The Invader - The latest of the rides of the park, The Invader is a Disk'O Coaster from Zamperla in Italy which utilises gravity to move across a 15 metre high, 80 metre long w-shaped track.
- Power Surge - The Power Surge is a thrill ride that can spin on both a horizontal and a vertical axis.
- Cinema 180 - The C180 is a dome cinema providing a 180 degree field of view. Guests stand inside the dome in front of the screen and watch a 12 minute movie.
- Castle Land - A themed area targeted at younger guests. Attractions can be rented out for birthday parties. They include Space Shuttles, Car Wash Convoy, Carousel and The Jumpin' Star.
- Corkscrew Roller coaster -a roller coaster manufactured by Arrow Dynamics. It is the only one of its kind in the country. It is over 90 feet (27 m) high, and contains three inversions, a vertical loop and a double corkscrew.
- Goldrush - A mine themed roller coaster ride consisting of short drops and sharp corners. This ride was custom built by Rainbow's End engineers
- Log Flume - The Enchanted Forest log flume is one of park's best rides, with 2 minor drops and a larger drop at the end with an onride picture booth.
- Fear Fall - An 18 storey Intamin drop ride. Riders are lifted up the tower and dropped at speeds reaching 80 km/h, with the ride vehicle being stopped by magnetic braking.
- Family Karts/Scorpion Karts - A Go kart attraction with two levels of suitability- one for families, one for older guests.
- Pirate Ship - A giant swinging ship.
- Bumper Boats - Guests are seated in Bumper Boats and are free to drive around 'bumping' into other guests.
- Motion Master - A motion simulator attraction.
- Crazy Sideshows - A range of carnival rides open on weekends and holidays.
- Centre Stage - A large covered stage and eating area with shows on the weekends and the holidays.
- Interactive arcade - A large arcade with lots of interactive games and gifts.
On 10 February 1990 Thomas Wayne Hemi, 19 years old, fell from a bungy jump at the park. The jump master, Jason John Collett, failed to secure the bungy cord to Hemi's feet. Hemi initially survived the fall, but subsequently died from his injuries. Collett was later found guilty of manslaughter after evidence was presented that both men had smoked cannabis prior to the jump. He was granted mercy - on recommendation from the jury - and was sentenced to 200 hours of community service.
On 21 June 1998 at 3:30pm a fire struck the Log Flume ride. Over 75% of the ride was destroyed and two offenders were arrested. After that, the Log Flume was reconstructed and re-themed.
On 2 February 2008, Michael Ross Stuart, a 21 year old park worker died while carrying out maintenance work on a ferris wheel, located in the Cadbury Land Dream Castle attraction. The worker became trapped between one of the carriages and the frame of the ride, and had to be cut free by firefighters, but died at the scene. The accident, which occurred before the park opened for the day, caused the park to be closed down for two days because of "unforeseen circumstances". Stuart had been working at the park since 2005.
On 10 November 2012, A woman got trapped on the log flume ride. Firefighters were called to the theme park to free the woman and had to cut up parts of the ride to get her free. A fire service spokesman said it was unclear how the woman became trapped. She was taken by ambulance to Middlemore Hospital with minor injuries.
- England and Herefordshire - Revisit. "History of sentenced adventure operators - National News". TVNZ. Retrieved 28 September 2013.
- Martin Johnston (10 February 2008). "Police name man killed at Rainbow's End". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 10 September 2011.
- Martin Johnston (11 February 2008). "Theme park stays shut after tragedy". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 10 September 2011.
- "Rainbow's End Ride Injures Woman - national". Stuff.co.nz. 10 November 2012. Retrieved 28 September 2013.
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