Disney Designer Bringing Whirligig Woods Theme Park To North Carolina
A former designer for Disney parks and Busch Gardens has officially announced plans to bring an all new family entertainment experience, Whirligig Woods Amusement Park and Treehouse Resort, to Saxapahaw, North Carolina.
WRAL reports that theme park designer and Raleigh resident Bob Baranick, who has worked on projects around the world including Disney World, Disney Land, and Busch Gardens, is turning his dream for a North Carolina theme park into a reality with his proposed Whirligig Woods, which he plans to build on a 21-acre site in Saxapahaw, located in Alamance County on the Haw River less than 20 miles west of Chapel Hill.
The new theme park would include thrill rides, a tree house resort, and a Halloween-themed haunted land to be called Spooky Hollow.
According to the report, Baranick plans to break ground in 2018, with the first phase of Whirligig Woods opening in 2019. He also has plans for a second and third park to follow in North Carolina, including one “for the coast” to include a pirate town.
Baranick, who has 45 years of experience in theme park design, says that he is especially passionate about this project and has no doubts that it will happen.
“We have a seasoned team behind this,” he said. “We have designers from Hollywood that are working on it. What I really want to do is inspire the next generation to use their imagination and to dream. It’s more than just throwing money around. It has a soul. It has a meaning, and it’s very important for the future of North Carolina.”
He and his team have already purchased land in Saxapahaw, NC for Whirligig Woods.
Baranick’s wife, Carol Wood, is the art director for the project. Her background is in art and production design for film, and her brother is Ira David Wood, director of the locally produced drama The Lost Colony for the last five years and father of actress Evan Rachel Wood (Westworld, True Blood).
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