Happy 75th, Knott's Berry Farm Ghost Town

The rootin', tootin' Buena Park attraction marks a major milestone.

ORANGE COUNTY CLASSIC: If you've ever visited a ghost town, the kind of place that hummed with mining activity and pioneer settlements back in the 19th century, you likely had to take a rather lengthy, winding drive to get there, possibly over some hills and along some desert-pretty stretches. But one of the most famous ghost towns in the world sits in the heart of thrumming, bustling Buena Park, itself a part of thrumming, bustling Orange County, and while it didn't see any 19th-century mining concerns, it has provided generations of Californians, and visitors from all over, with a taste of the Old West. This version of the Old West, of course, is quite historic, and while it doesn't have roots in 1800s, it has been a Buena Park landmark since the early '40s, when Walter and Cordelia Knott looked for a way to further captivate visitors arriving for chicken dinners and berry treats. That's right: The Ghost Town at Knott's Berry Farm is turning 75 in 2016, and the coaster-laden theme park will celebrate its very first entertainment area throughout the summer.

GHOST TOWN ALIVE! will charm park goers from Friday, May 27 through Monday, Sept. 5. It's an interactive experience where "you play a role in new stories and adventures in the old west town of Calico," so get ready to do a bit of theoretical time-traveling. GhostRider, the mega wooden coaster at the park, will also be back in June after a major refurbishment. And, of course, there's the old-school, easy-breezy tradition of simply strolling the themed experience, with its yippee-ki-yay architecture, its banjo-strumming sounds, and its quaint nods to pop culture-inspired Westerniana.

HOW TO VISIT the Ghost Town? It's included with your admission to Knott's Berry Farm. But do you need to don a ten-gallon or chaps to properly pay homage? Nope, but you may wish you were rocking saddle-ready wear once you're there.

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