Playland (Vancouver)

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Playland Vancouver logo.svg
Slogan Come and join the fun!
Location Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Coordinates 49°16′58″N 123°02′12″W / 49.2827°N 123.0366°W / 49.2827; -123.0366Coordinates: 49°16′58″N 123°02′12″W / 49.2827°N 123.0366°W / 49.2827; -123.0366
Owner Pacific National Exhibition
Opened 1910 (107 years ago)
Operating season May – September
Total 31
Roller coasters 4
Water rides 1

Playland is an amusement park in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. It is located in Hastings Park and is the oldest amusement park in Canada.

The regular season lasts from May to the end of September every year. The park reopens for Fright Nights from mid October to the Halloween weekend. Playland usually adds a new ride every year and the park is always near capacity during the Fair. For the 2015 season, the park added Canada's most extreme pendulum ride, The Beast.

Playland and its renting partner Pacific National Exhibition (PNE) collectively host an annual fair for the local residents of Metro Vancouver. Talent shows, Animal Races, Demolition Derbies, Monster Trucks and many foods/snacks are a few of the many interesting events found at the fair. During this time, rides are brought in from West Coast Amusements nearly doubling the number of rides.

Attractions at Playland[edit]

Roller coasters[edit]

Corkscrew is a Corkscrew with Bayerncurve roller coaster at Playland.
Ride Name Year Opened Description
Wooden Roller Coaster 1958 Playland's signature attraction, this wooden coaster, designed by Carl Phare and Walker LeRoy, is the oldest roller coaster in Canada.[1] The coaster is an ACE Coaster Classic and Roller Coaster Landmark.[2][3]
Corkscrew 1994 A standard Vekoma-built roller coaster with a Bayerncurve and double corkscrews. Corkscrew has been in operation since 1994. This ride was relocated from Boblo Island, where it was known as Screamer.[4] This coaster was featured in the movies Final Destination 3 and Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days, and in the television series Smallville.
Kettle Creek Mine Coaster 2004 Family coaster built by E&F Miler Industries.[5] The ride takes two trips around. It replaced the Dragon Coaster in 2004.
Bug Whirled 2017 An SBF Visa Group miniature family spinning coaster with ladybug cars that go around a figure 8 shaped track.

Extreme rides[edit]

An Enterprise ride at Playland, one of many thrill rides at the park.
The Hellevator is a 60 metres (200 ft) drop tower at Playland.
Hells Gate is a Top Spin that randomly sprays water on its riders.
Ride Opened Manufacturer Description
Atmosfear July 16, 2011 Funtime Amusements This ride joined Playland in the Summer of 2011. Manufactured under the name StarFlyer (renamed Atmosfear by Playland), the ride consists of Wave Swinger-like swings that rotate 360° at a towering height of 218 feet [66 metres] and spins up to 70 km/h. The ride was installed by Ride Entertainment Group, who handles all of Funtime's operations in North America.[6][7]
The Beast 2015 KMG An XXL ride similar to Crazy Beach Party.
Breakdance 2005 HUSS Park Attractions A model of the Breakdance ride by HUSS. It traveled in Europe before being located to Playland.
Crazy Beach Party 2004 HUSS Park Attractions A model of the Frisbee designed by HUSS. It traveled with Funtastic Shows in Washington state before being located to Playland. It was thought to have been replaced by The Beast which was installed for the 2015 season but, the two rides currently co-exist as the Crazy Beach Party was relocated to another area in the park.
Drop Zone 2000 SkyCoaster A model of the Skycoaster. Guests attached to rip cords get pulled up a 30 m (100 ft) tower then let to free fall. There is an additional charge to go on this attraction ($24.00 for 2 people as of June 2016)
Enterprise 1984 HUSS Park Attractions A standard Enterprise ride. It traveled with Conklin Shows in eastern Canada before being located to Playland.
Flume 1985 Reverchon Industries A log flume water ride with two drops, with the second drop being 12 m (40 ft) tall. A picture is taken on the second drop for purchase at the booth towards the exit.
Gladiator 2005 HUSS Park Attractions Huss airboat ride. Three arms with spinning air boats raise and lower while spinning.
Hellevator 2000 S&S Power A 60 m (202 ft) tall pneumatically powered vertical tower ride by S&S Power. A model of the "Combo Ride",[8][9] it may operate in Turbo Drop mode, Space Shot mode, or irregularly, combining both.
Hell's Gate 1999 HUSS Park Attractions A Top Spin ride with water jets spraying riders at random times. The water jets were taken out from the ride for a period of time, but have been recently put back in and were in use during the summer, however the jets no longer spray the riders. It was purchased new.
Music Express pre-1987 Mack Rides A model of Music Express ride, cars on a raised and lowered circular track spin rapidly while music is played. It sat with Conklin Shows in eastern Canada before being located to Playland.
Pirate 1984 HUSS Park Attractions A swinging pirate ship ride. It was purchased new. The peak swing height of Pirate was reduced by approximately 3 m after Atmosfear was installed. It is not known if it will be increased again.
Revelation 2000 Gravity Works A 50 m (160 ft) tall Skyscraper rotating arm with cockpit seats on both ends. There is an additional charge ($24.00 as of June 2016) to go on this attraction. It was purchased new.They also shot Scenes of the movie Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days (film) on this ride.
Rock-N-Cars 2014 Majestic Bumper car ride.
Wave Swinger 1960 Zierer A Classic Bavarian Style Wave Swinger ride with a top that tilts.
Westcoast Wheel 2007 Mulligan A Mulligan Wheel bought in 2007 to replace the 80-year-old Ferris wheel that used to be at Playland.

Rides at P.N.E. only (provided by Westcoast Amusements)[edit]

Note that the lineup of rides may vary every year.

Ride Name Manufacturer Years Active Description
1001 Nachts A.R.M. ?−Present A model of the Ali Baba ride, similar to the previous permanent Playland attraction.
Berry go Round Sellner Manufacturing Until 1990(?) Where riders sit in berry shaped cars and spin the car using a turntable located inside the car.Similar to a Tea Cup ride.
Chaos Chance Rides (only one season) A ride where passengers sit in cars of to people that face out wards while the wheel spins and the boom rises so that the cars connected to the wheel flip and rock up side down.
Cliff Hanger Larson ?−Present Hang Glider type ride
Evolution Fabbri Group (2 seasons after 2001) A ride where riders sit outwards in 4 seater carts that are connected to a centre wheel that is connected to a huge arm that rotates back and forth until going completely upside down while the centre wheel is spinning.
Fireball Larson 2010 Updated version of SuperLoops and the RingOfFire (Brought back after 15 or so year Hiatus)
FootLoose Fabbri Group ? Similar to Skymaster.
Gravitron Wisdom ?−Present Also Starship 2000 and Starship 3000.
Impact Zone Majestic ?−Present Bumper Car ride
Inverter Chance Rides ? A standard Inverter
Orbiter Tivoli ?−Present Standard Orbiter
Ring Of Fire Larson ? Superloops and Ring Of Fire. The PNE Stopped hiring the ride after an accident involving a mechanic. They brought back the newer version, Fireball in 2010.
Sizzler Wisdom 2010 A faster more flashy version of the Scrambler
Skymaster A.R.M. ? Standard Skymaster
Spider Lee Eyerly 2010–present Also known as the Octopus (brought back for 2010 fair)
Spin Out K.M.G. ? Standard issue Spin Out. 2001 model.
Spring Ride Moser 2000s − Present That drop ride for kids (usually referred to as Mini Hellevator).
Super Shot Larson ? Super Shot ride.
Tilt-a-wirl Sellner Manufacturing 2010–present Basic Tilt-a-wirl brought back after Playland sold theirs.
Tornado Wisdom ? Where riders spin the carts while been elevated into the air.
Twin Flip Moser 2005(?) It is believed to be the only Twin Flip in North America.
Vertigo A.R.M. 2010–present A wave swinger type ride which climbs a large tower
Zendar Dartron (for a few years in the 1990s) A ride where riders enter to large cages and ride in a standing position while being held to the wall with contrifugal force because of the two large cages faslty spinning. Similar to the Scat and Scat II.
Zero Gravity Dartron 2006 −Present Dartron Zero Gravity (replaced Zendar Presumably)
Zipper Chance Rides 1980s and 1990s A ride that spins on a giant boom while carts flip riders upside down.

Family Attractions[edit]

These rides are located at a section of the park called Kids Playce at Playland. All rides there have a height restriction of (90 cm/36") with the exception of Balloon Explorers, which has a minimum height of 42 inches. The maximum height is 150 cm (60 in) unless otherwise noted.

The entrance to Kids Playce, an area of the amusement park that features family friendly rides.
  • Balloon Explorers − Eight hot air balloons that go 42 feet in the air and move in a circular motion.
  • Dizzy Drop − Kids rotating drop tower.
  • The Flutterbye− Zamperla Magic Bikes.
  • Cap'n KC - Boats on a small shallow circular water channel.
  • Choppers - Motorcycles moving in a circular motion.
  • Cool Cruzers − Dune buggy ride.
  • Honeybee Express – A miniature train ride. Minimum height: 36 inches
  • Merry-Go-Round – Classic carousel ride. No 150 cm (60 in) limit.
  • Scrambler - Three armed rotating ride with three cars on each arm giving the feeling of collision.
  • Super Slide – A three lane slide. No 150 cm (60 in) limit.
  • Teacups − Classic Teacup ride.

Other attractions[edit]

  • Command Headquarters (CHQ) – Video Game Arcade. (Verified As Of Dec 5, 2009)
  • Bonanza Shooting Gallery- Old west themed shooting gallery.
  • Climbing Wall – A 10 m (35 ft) tall climbing wall with three climbing stations, two for beginners and one for experts. This attraction is free during the regular operating season, but there is an additional cost to go on it during the annual fair. The climbing wall ranges from a 5.6 to a 5.10a in difficulty according to the Yosemite Decimal System.
  • Glass House – A maze constructed of transparent walls.
  • Haunted Mansion – A walk thru haunted house. There is an additional charge for this attraction.
  • Pacific Adventure Golf – An 18-hole miniature golf course.

Midway Games[edit]

Playland includes a number of midway games, located in the eastern section of the amusement park, next to the Wooden Roller Coaster.
  • Arcade
  • Big Bang
  • BlockBuster
  • Bombs Away
  • Crossbow
  • Derby Downs
  • High Striker
  • Jump Shot
  • One Ball
  • Play Quarters
  • Play to Win
  • Pop-A-Lot
  • Pop Gun
  • Ring Toss
  • Rising Waters
  • Roll-A-Ball
  • Skatter Ball
  • Tuff Guys
  • Whac-A-Mole

Past amusement rides[edit]

Ride Year Opened Year Closed Manufacturer Description
Calypso Schwarzkopf Retired from service after mechanical problems.
Dragon Coaster 2003 Zamperla A powered Zamperla little kids coaster.
Ferris Wheel 1924 2006 Eli Bridge Co. Large Eli Wheel. Replaced by the Westcoast Wheel
Octopus 2004 Eyerly Similar to the Octopus.
Raiders 2014 Large themed jungle gym set themed to (unofficially) Raiders of the Lost Ark.
Rainbow 1984 2000 HUSS A Rainbow ride by Huss. It was acquired from Maple Leaf Village in Ontario. Last seen traveling with shows in Poland.
Scooters 1966 2013 Floyd & Baxter Bumper Car ride in a green striped tent. Replaced by Rock'N'Cars
Super Big Gulp 1972 1994 Schwarzkopf A Schwarzkopf Jet Star II coaster. Renamed and painted blue after sponsorship by 7-Eleven was gained. It is currently stored in trailers near New Jersey pending sponsorship to finish refurbishing. The PNE believes it was moved to Mexico, but this was recently proven to be false.
Tilt-A-Whirl Pre-1987 2004 Sellner Standard Tilt-A-Whirl.
Wild Mouse 1979 2008 Princeton Machine[10] A wild mouse roller coaster with tight turns and drops. It was the only roller coaster the company ever created. The layout was a copy of German made Wild Mouse coasters. It was reported to be manufactured in 1967 but this has not been confirmed. It was taken out of service due to high maintenance costs. Recent evidence hints to it being sold or under restoration, such as demolition videos showing care to not damage the structure and the mentioning that it still exists, but this evidence has not been confirmed.[11][12]
Zillerator 1996 1997 D.P.V. Rides A short-lived Italian-made coaster. Currently owned by Butler Amusements and travels around western USA.

Past attractions[edit]

  • Nintendo Power Zone – A place to go play the latest video games for Nintendo and PlayStation.
  • The Maze – A maze built of covered chain link fencing. Was located approximately where the Revelation is now.

Annual events[edit]

Fright Nights[edit]

From the start of October until the Halloween weekend, Playland is home to the Fright Nights Halloween event. During this time, haunted houses are setup inside Playland and employed monsters are roaming the park scaring patrons. Most of the parks regular amusement rides are in operation.

Since the beginning of the event in 2003, the haunted houses have been owned and managed by ScreamWorks Inc., a Calgary-based company. In 2009, the PNE and Playland begun managing the Fright Nights event, including the haunted houses.

A 2010 episode of the TV show Psych entitled "In Plain Fright" was filmed at Playland during Fright Nights at Playland.

Film setting[edit]

The amusement park was for the filming of several films. The 1999 Canadian teen-drama film Rollercoaster, was shot at the park. The opening scenes of the horror film Final Destination 3 were also shot at the park, utilizing the Corkscrew roller coaster, seen in the film as "Devil's Flight". Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days was filmed at Playland for the boardwalk scene, where the Corkscrew roller coaster and Revelation ('Cranium Shaker' in the movie) rotating arm ride were shown along with many smaller rides. The Nickelodeon original movie Splitting Adam was also filmed at Playland's water park.[13] The 1996 film, Fear was shot there in the summer of 1995.


  1. ^ Judd, Amy (May 6, 2016). "Canada's oldest wooden roller coaster set to open for another season". Global News. Corus Entertainment. Retrieved August 20, 2017. 
  2. ^ "Coaster Landmark Award". American Coaster Enthusiasts. Retrieved August 20, 2017. 
  3. ^ "Playland roller-coaster wins classic status". CTV News. Bell Media. July 12, 2009. Retrieved August 20, 2017. 
  4. ^ "Corkscrew (Playland)". Roller Coaster DataBase. Retrieved July 11, 2010. 
  5. ^ "Kettle Creek Mine (Playland)". Roller Coaster DataBase. Retrieved July 11, 2010. 
  6. ^ "Star Flyer opens in Vancouver". Park World Magazine. 5 August 2011. Retrieved 22 November 2013. 
  7. ^ "Projects". Ride Entertainment Group. Retrieved 22 November 2013. 
  8. ^ [1]
  9. ^ [2]
  10. ^ "Wild Mouse (Playland)". Roller Coaster DataBase. Retrieved July 11, 2010. 
  11. ^ "Playland". 102.7 The PEAK - Vancouver's New Rock. Retrieved June 16, 2015. 
  12. ^ Wild Mouse roller coaster
  13. ^ [3]

External links[edit]