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DinoLand U.S.A. #WDW24

If you believe the rumors DinoLand U.S.A. is closer than ever to the end of its storied run in Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Of course we’ve been hearing these rumors for a while and while this non-IP based area of the park is a personal favorite it really doesn’t have the pull that maybe it needs fight off its own extinction. And as fun as a dinosaur theme is a Tropical America’s concept would pull in new animals and new Disney characters. Will it happen? Most likely. When? No one really knows.

We’ve documented the area’s thrill ride Dinosaur last trip, the DinoLand U.S.A. playground on a previous trip, and on this trip we took a walk through area themed as a roadside attraction. The area is a little sparse from its heyday missing the recently closed Primeval Whirl thrill ride. The overall theming is still outstanding despite the loss and maybe a bit of neglect it has seen in recent years. It is still a great place to catch Donald, Daisy, and a Dino-themed Chip & Dale.

This area will definitely be missed when it enters the Disney memory vault but sometimes the replacement exceeds expectations in a way you couldn’t expect. Let’s hope whatever direction this area goes that is the case.

The backstory of DinoLand U.S.A. –

DinoLand U.S.A. originally started as a small highway town where an amateur fossil-hunter found some dinosaur bones in 1947. After contacting some scientist friends, they gathered their money together to purchase the site. Since then, scientists, volunteers, and grad students have been living there trying to find answers about dinosaurs. The Dino Institute was founded and opened the site as a “fossil discover park”. An old fishing lodge of the property became the Restaurantosaurus. Meanwhile, the Dino Institute and their partners at a research facility called Chrono-Tech discovered how to warp vehicles through time, and thus started doing time tours.

Chester and Hester, two locals, were determined to make a quick buck and converted their gas station into a fossil souvenir shop. Not to be out done by the Dino Institute, they turned their parking lot into a small amusement park called “Chester and Hester’s Dino-Rama”, featuring their own version of DINOSAUR named Primeval Whirl. They also added TriceraTop Spin and the midway games.

An interesting sign I found walking around – maybe something that was here that is already extinct? I followed the trail and it lead to a character meet & greet. Not sure if this was intentional or not.