Dismantling A Tulsa Landmark

Monday, February 26th 2007, 10:14 am
By: News On 6

It's a big job, moving an amusement park; the folks at Bell's Amusement Park have been dismantling rides and the Midway since the middle of January. The News On 6’s Rick Wells reports most of the small rides are gone, and the real heavy lifting is just beginning.

A familiar site is missing from the Tulsa County fairgrounds, most the rides from Bell’s Amusement Park have been dismantled, and many are sitting stacked in a Tulsa warehouse. Most of the kids rides and arcade games are in storage, while some of the bigger rides are still in the park.

Bell's most famous ride is Zingo, the wooden roller coaster people from all over the country have come to Tulsa to ride. Robby Bell says his dad built it in 1968 for about $240,000, it would cost at least $3 million today to duplicate it, so it's coming down piece by piece.

"You'd be surprised how much material you'd keep off of it,” Bell’s owner Robby Bell said. “We will lose what we call the trackbed."

The trackbed is the part above Zingo’s rib-like cross pieces. That will be tossed, the rest will come down like an erector set. Bell says it will take 12 weeks to tear down the ride, and five months to rebuild it somewhere else.

The other large rides will be temporarily relocated to the manufacturer for storage; the Mind Melt for example will go back to Plainview, Texas.

The folks at Bell's are quickly running out of time to get all the work done, their deadline is March 8th. They are hoping the fairgrounds will give them an extension.

To find out more about Bell's Amusement Park, visit their website.