TOWN/SUBURB/CITY/COUNTRY CURRENTLY RESIDING:Wyong, Central Coast NSW
TOWN/SUBURB/CITY/COUNTRY YOU GREW UP IN: Blacktown
If you worked there, when did you work there and in which area? I never got the opportunity to work at Australia's Wonderland. I was too young. I was only 18 years old when Wonderland closed down. It used to be my dream to work at Wonderland. I used to imagine working there when I was a child. I remember when I was really young- around 10-12 years old- I used to feel like I was a worker walking around the park haha. If people appeared to be lost going around the park I would always offer directions for them. I felt like an unofficial worker even though I wasn't haha.
As a customer how many times do you think you went there?
My family had Wonderpasses every year for a long time. I remember back when I was in primary school we used to have those Dollarmite accounts with the Commonwealth Bank. Every year we would save up about $40 each and those $40 would go towards the Wonderpasses. I remember how excited I would get when we would go to buy the Wonderpasses feeling like I'd actually bought it myself lol. It felt like MY Wonderpass.
Due to the fact that we had Wonderpasses we went there a LOT. I reckon we went to Australia's Wonderland about once every two or three weeks. I still remember how it would go. My Mum and Daddy would tell us we were going to have a surprise. I don't know how we didn't catch onto the fact that the surprise was always the same thing lol. Maybe we were so young we didn't catch onto this fact haha.
I remember we would get into the car and by the time we were driving down Wallgrove Road I knew exactly where we were headed to. We were heading to our beloved Wonderland. There was always much excitement when this discovery was made lol.
When my Mum and Daddy separated it was always Wonderland where we would meet my Daddy for our visitation visits. I still remember exactly where we met up. We always met up directly outside the Dragons Flight near where the rocks were in the garden. My Daddy would put me onto his shoulders and we would head off for the rides.
What is your earliest memory of Australia's Wonderland? My very earliest memories of Wonderland. I have a couple of them. My Daddy was always the one that took us on the scariest rides in the park. My Mum was too scared haha. I remember when I was younger I REALLY REALLY wanted to go on Wizards Fury. When we had gone to Wonderland with my Dads family I would always see my older cousin go on it and be I wanted to go on it as well. However, my Daddy would always tell me I wasn't old enough. He didn't tell me I was tall enough haha. I remember that fact. I remember my Daddy was determined on telling me that before I could go on the Wizards Fury I would need to be 7 years old. I looked forward to that day so much. Finally I was 7. I still remember how excited I was that I could finally go on the ride. I really thought my going on the ride was determined by how old I was haha. My Daddy took me on the Wizards Fury and I LOVED it. I went on it many many times after that going into the dark tunnel lol. That ride was well worth waiting for. It became one of my favorite rides in the park.
In later years after my Daddy died I became the one that took my youngest brother Nathan on all the scary rides in the park for the first time- my Mum was still always too scared lol.
The other memory that I have of going to Wonderland when I was really young was one of the first times that I ever went on the Beastie. I remember my Daddy made me look backwards on the rollercoaster while going up the hill and this then started my fear of heights XD
My Mum and Daddy were very religious people and they refused to let us call the rides by some of their names lmao. We had to call the Demon the superloop and we had to call the Zodiac the spiders. Haha I still remember that.
I remember when the dinosaurs exhibit visited the park. I remember the large footprints that used to be all around the park that led to the exhibit. My brothers and I used to jump on them as we were walking haha.
I remember when Flintones Splashdown first open lining up for over and hour to go on it lol. That was one of only two times. I can remember going on it.
I once got sick at Wonderland and I remember getting taken to the first aid room which I also think was the lost childrens room cause I remember thinking how fun it looked in there lol.
The last early memory I have of Wonderland was how one of my younger brothers would always be scared of the monster inside the cave thing heading into Transylvania. Every time it's eyes would go on he would get sooooo scared XD.
Tell us the funniest thing that ever happened to you or you saw at Wonderland Hmmm the funniest thing I ever saw at Wonderland would HAVE to be all of the antics that Captain Caveman would get up to with the guests at the park. Either sneaking up behind them or scaring and then running away or the many other antics he got up to. Though as a young child I admit to being scared of him lol.
What was your favourite ride and why? Favorite ride. That's hard. My favorite ride was either the Dragon's Flight for sentimental reasons, the Wizards Fury as it was always the ride I genuinely had the most fun on or the Tasmanian Devil.
Another of my favorite rides was a ride that was well worth lining up for about an hour for- Snowy River Rampage. I remember on a really hot day the lines for that que would go on FOREVER. But it was always well worth waiting for. Unlike most rides like the Snowy River Rampage ride where you were more than likely not going to get that wet Snowy River Rampage you would ALWAYS get SATURATED on. I remember I once went to the park with my then best friend Sian and after we had gone to Wonderland we had to use towels on the seats in the car so as not to get them wet and she had to change into some of my clothes when she got back to my place haha.
Were there any rides that you were scared of? If so why?
Yes there were rides that I was genuinely terrified of.
I was terrified of Space Probe 7 and never would have gone on it because as I said before I am terrified of heights.
I was also terrified of The Demon. I was terrified of the thought of going backwards lol.
I was terrified of was Bountys Revenge. I didn't like the thought of hanging upside down lol. My Daddy once lost a pair of sunglasses on that ride. I dont know if that had anything to do with my fear or not haha.
In later years I would get scared of the Skyrider for the same reason being afraid of heights. The only way that you could get me on that ride was if I went on it sitting down. You could NOT get me on that ride standing up lol.
The Beastie was one ride where I could go on it over and over again like I did the day I went on and proudly boasted to everyone at the park that I went on it 13 times in a row or it was a ride I would steer clear away from haha.
Did you ever get stuck on any ride(s) If so what happened Never got stuck on a ride haha. Unless you consider being stuck on a ride being allowed to go on the same ride over and over by putting my thumb up in the air to saying I wanted another ride- which I did on MANY occasions lol.
Did you ever meet anyone special at Wonderland I was lucky enough to be a Wiggles fan back in the days before they were VERY famous. They did many free concerts at Wonderland over the years. The earliest concert I went to at Wonderland was back in about 1993. I remember that they were so poor that they couldn't even afford extra people for the role of Captain Feathersword. Anthony would always have to go backstage and dress up as Captain Feathersword. The concert we saw that day took place at the ship stage near the front of the park. At the end of their show we got to go down and meet them. I remember we got to have our pictures with them, get their autographs and we even got to try on the Captain Feathersword hat. Not many children can say that they have actually got to try on the Captain Feathersword hat. Nowadays they are so famous that only celebrity get to do this. This was one experience I will always remember.
When was your last visit to Wonderland? The very last time that I went to Wonderland was April 2002 on a school excursion. I remember being so depressed that day. NOTHING was as I remembered it being. Everything was different. Sign up on HBL saying that guests had complained about all the walking so it was closed down, Wizards Fury was gone, rides had been moved around everywhere, name changes, different colors in the rides. I was SOOOOO sad. It was like my memories had been taken away from me.
I spent most of the day that day going on the Zodiac to see if I could overcome my fear of heights and just to get up there and have a view over the entire park. To try and remember Wonderland as I used to always remember it. I went on the Zodiac over and over again that day.
Even though I went there on a school excursion that day I spent a lot of time on my own. I spent a lot of time going back to all of the places that I had gone to as a child with my Dad. The meeting point where we had met up with my Daddy outside the Dragon's Flight. The Tasmanian Devil was still thankfully open. It wasn't one of the days when it would constantly be down for maintenance. So I was glad I at least had the Tasmanian Devil and The Dragon's Flight to go on that day.
I remember going there that day and all of the rides being smaller than they used to be lol. When you are young everything looks bigger than it actually is. I hadn't been there in a number of years because after my Dad passed away Wonderland became an emotional place for my family because it held a lot of memories of times with my Dad. I spent a lot of time that day reflecting on the relationship I had had with my father who died when I was only 8 years old.
I left Wonderland that day feeling so empty. A day that I had woken up to with such excitement I left feeling let down. I felt like I was saying goodbye to Wonderland that day. Little did I know that that was what I was actually doing.
How did the closure of Wonderland make you feel? hen came the news that Wonderland was closing it's doors. It had to be a joke right? It couldn't be true! Someone would save it. There were talks from the government that they would save it. Hope began to build but that was all it was- talks. Nothing more. I held hope that Wonderland would open it's doors again right up until the Bush Beast was demolished. Whenever I would pass by Wonderland after it first closed down I would see the Bush Beast still there and the Demon and Space Probe and Zodiac still visibile and it almost gave it a sense of hope. But then the Zodiac wasn't visible anymore and every time I would pass by the Bush Beast I would feel so sad.
I remember one distinct time when I passed by Wonderland on our way to the highway. It was very early in the morning. We were on a long journey in the car. There in the sky we could make out the Bush Beast. I just started crying and couldn't stop. It was like a part of me had died. One of the last parts of my Daddy and my memories of my Daddy died with Wonderland.
I remember I wanted to go back to Wonderland after it closed to get a piece of it. I wanted a piece of Wonderland lol. I actually wanted either a piece of one of the rides or a piece of the path from outside the Dragon's Flight where we would always meet up with my Daddy on those visitation visits all those years ago.
When you think of Wonderland now, what does it mean to you? I used to want to have gone back to Wonderland that one last time before it closed down. But in a way I'm glad that I didn't. I am glad that I can still remember Wonderland how it always was back when I was younger.
Not being able to climb up the ropes and having to always use the stairs on the slides, the puppet shows at the puppet theatres, the laughter and fun, the balloons soaring away into the sky haha, the long ques for the Snowy River Rampage not the 2 minute ques when I last went there in 02. The park layout being so well known to me I could draw it in my sleep. The Wizards Fury, The Dragons Flight, The Tasmanian Devil, The Snowy River Rampage, this is what Wonderland meant to me.
I am so lucky that to this day I have footage of my times at Wonderland. 1989 footage of me having fun as a two year old on Dinos Derby screaming out "hello everybody!" lol and George Jetson pushing my then baby brother in the stroller back when the carousel used to have music to it and dancing to the music. My baby brother then cried when George went away. Then the almost hour of footage I have of my time at Wonderland in 1993. This footage will always be special to me. My Daddy is in this footage. We are all happy. We are all at Wonderland. When I am really missing Wonderland it is this footage that I go to. I just hope the tapes don't wear out XD
Wonderland was my Daddy. I know how devastated my Daddy would have been to see Wonderland close. I wish I never lived to see the day it did either. With Wonderland closing it took with it so many of my happy memories with my Daddy. Another piece of him died that day. It was one of the saddest moments of my life and still is.
I have had so many dreams about Wonderland reopening. When I have dreams about my Daddy at night it is always Wonderland where we are in my dreams. Wonderland was that happy place where I could always go to be happy. Wouldn't it be wonderful if the world was Wonderland.
Any other stories related to Wonderland? I remember going to Wonderland back when the first series of Big Brother was on. Me and some people I met at the park were going for Ben to win. Some other people were going for Blair. I met them in the que for HMS Endeavour. We spent the whole ride going back and forward "Ben!" "Blair!" "Ben!" Blair!" lol
The other memory that I have at Wonderland was going to Wonderland at night. I remember me and my cousin Susie were lining up for the Wizards Fury. There was this guy lining up in the que with us. He offered us some of his doughnuts and we gladly took some XD
I remember the entrance to Wonderland with the stars. It used to echo lol. My brothers and I used to go under there and make it echo haha.
Somewhere I have a picture of me on one of the 13 times on the Beastie that day. Though I don't know where lol.
I remember winning a few prizes at Wonderland. The first ever prize I won there was a big yellow duck with a blue cape thing and hat. I won it on the guess the weight thing paying $5 for the game cause I took the risk cause I wanted the more expensive prize haha. The name of the worker on that day was Corinne so I called the duck Corinne haha. Then the second prize that I won at Wonderland I wanted so much I reckon I spent more playing the game over and over again than I would have if I had bought the prize at the store haha. I wanted a little tiny stuffed elephant and played the ring toss over and over until I got that elephant. I couldn't decide on what color I wanted but finally decided on the usual grey XD I walked away and then ran back again before leaving and after coming back named the elephant Tracy after the worker that was running the game that day haha.
If you are still reading this thankyou for taking your time to read my memories of me at a very special place for me and my family. Wonderland will always be in my heart. I am almost in tears over here thinking about how much Wonderland meant to me and my family. I will never fully get over Wonderland closing. I will always be angry for what Sunway did. I will always be disappointed that something wasn't done to save it. I lost a bit of faith in humanity when Wonderland died. A little bit more of my innocence in this world got taken away. Wonderland will always be in my heart as the place of pure happiness and joy. Memories of my Dad that will never be forgotten. If I have lost you along the way sorry for writing so much. I did give warning that I would write a lot. As you can guess I have been to Wonderland countless upon countless of times. These are only but a few of my memories of my times at Wonderland. I can think of many many more but I would run out of time and space. Wonderland I still love and miss you so much.
Wouldn't it be wonderful, walking hand in hand. Wouldn't it be wonderful if the world was Wonderland!