OCEAN CITY – Trimper’s Rides and Amusement Park has used a little bit of magic to transform a traditional kiddie ride.
On Saturday, April 7, the Trimper Family will mark the opening of the Gran Ville Train Station, a newly revamped attraction in the historic carousel building on the Boardwalk.
“I think my dad would be really proud that we have taken riding a kiddie ride to a whole new level in Ocean City,” Trimper’s Vice President Stephanie Lewis, daughter of the late Granville Trimper. “It just gives it that little extra something for the same ticket price.”
The ride is described as a mountain waterfall that spills over the entrance to an old mine tunnel and fills a pond surrounded by plants and more than a few curious critters.
“We go to the Disney parks every year, and we are always jealous because they have so much room to do exciting things and we have this two-block area to try to fit all these rides in and it is hard to do anything exciting,” Lewis said. “We have seen a lot of things there that we would love to try.”
On top of experiencing The Gran Ville Train Station, park visitors will be able to mine for gems themselves. Using pans guests will sift through sift through dirt to find hidden gems, as well as take their new treasure home with them in a keepsake bag.
“I think they are going to go ‘wow’ because we have kept it very closed up so nobody has any idea what we have been doing and it definitely doesn’t look like the old Trimper kiddie rides,” Lewis said.
In order to make The Gran Ville Train Station happen, two other traditional Trimper kiddie rides were moved around and the train ride that was originally tucked around the roller coaster was put in their place with its new surroundings.
“It just looked kind of dinky and unappealing so we decided to try to give it a kind of Disney look and create a whole little western theme, and we have been working on it all winter,” Lewis said.
The new ride was a multi-generational effort as the design and construction was headed by project team leader Brian Lewis and family friend Mark Frostrom of Land Escapes of Pocomoke, assisted by Matt Lewis, Mike Broyles, Nicola Walshe and Brooks Trimper. Master Electrician Ralph Holloway, joined by son Andy Holloway and Bernie Walls, installed the special lighting and animatronic effects. Artist Maria Schlick provided the finishing touches to bring the scene to life.
Other attractions that received facelifts during the off-season are the popular Shooting Gallery and the Big Dodgem bumper cars. Married artists Brad and Iva Holloway designed and created the enhancements which include a new neon mural for the bumper cars and a renewal of all the gallery’s many targets.