"Journey to the Planet of the Apes" was another one of Fred's attractions and appeared somewhere around 1974 or 75'. Upon entering the spacecraft everyone would be seated in a circle. At the center of the circle the Captain and a small crew of actors surrounded the command post. Once everyone was seated the ship would start to rotate and a light show would begin. During the short trip through space and time the audience is told the story of the Planet of the Apes. The ship would soon begin to slow down and come to a stop. At this point the hatch would open to a world inhabited by primates. Ape soldiers would burst through the door attacking the captain and his crew while the audience would be led through the interior space door and into a primitive underground world. After being shuffled through caves and corridors you would exit the ride out onto the boardwalk. This attraction would later change to the popular "Star Wars" theme.

Pictured below are some construction photos

The structure is starting to take shape. That's Fred pictured to the left - Above is the rotary system where the spaceship will be placed.

To find out what became of the spacecraft CLICK HERE

The vortex that leads to the Planet of the Apes

The "Spirit of 76" was Fred's new and exciting attraction for the bicentennial year. The plane (a retired Martin 202) was trucked over from the Cape May County airport where its twin engines had been removed. It was 74 feet long with a wingspan of 94 feet. This ride held 44 people and would simulate a real flight. Inside the plane was a screen that would run footage of air travel over the Grand Canyon or the New York City skyline. All the while the plane would lurch and jerk as if you were flying through turbulence. When first opened the attraction cost a mere 75 cents to ride.

Pictured above is the plane being guided through the intersection of Rio Grande and Atlantic Avenues in Wildwood in route to Morey's Pier.

Pictured at right the plane is shown being hoisted by crane and lowered into place on the pier.



Postcard of the Devils Inn

One of Fred's projects in the mid-70's was the renovation of the old Devils Inn dark ride on Fun Pier. This ride was part walk-thru and part ride-thru. Fred re-themed the old ride into The Lost World. This ride is somewhat mysterious and there are few photos. I do remember that it was very damp and dark inside and not many stunts. There were also live actors playing the part of cave dwellers that would wander about or spring out from behind the stalagmites to scare you.
Pictured below are rare photos of the renovation to the ride. That's Fred to the left holding the chicken wire form. To the right an interior shot of the caves.
All photographs are part of the Mahana Family Collection and used with permission.

Copyright 2004 Ralph Grassi