Cool Rides At The MOA? Maybe

A couple years ago, a favorite band of mine announced that the rides at the Mall Of America were lame. All of us were like, "Of course!" What was once called Knott's Camp Snoopy has always had a dozen or more rather tame rides. The best was a nice flume ride with two drops, the first one in the dark. Also, the "Mystery Mine Ride" was an IMAX screen with chairs that moved in synch with the movie. I'd been on a couple fun rides in that machine. A year or so ago, it was renamed the Park at MOA and has remained pretty lame. But, it seems that may change.

Nickelodeon Universe Coming Spring 2008

This spring, the Park at MOA will be transformed into Nickelodeon Universe, and there's a bunch of interesting work going on it currently. Here's what I've found as far as information.

The Location of the Mystery Mine Ride

The above photo is the former location of the Mystery Mine Ride. This whole section of the Park has all been gutted, it seems. The IMAX theater of the Mine Ride may still be back behind those doorways on the right, but I'm not sure of that. Here's what's directly to the right below the Pepsi Ripsaw coaster hill:

Beneath the Pepsi Ripsaw

Most of the area has been newly cemented with a line area, so the loading for the ride may be here. Over in the center of the first photo is the preview of the new coaster, which now bears the name of Nickelodeon's biggest star, Spongebob:

Spongebob Squarepants Rock Bottom Plunge

The Rock Bottom Plunge, I believe, is a roller coaster that is supposed to even go upside down. It looks like there may also be a bit of water involved as well, but we'll see.

The other ride I noticed being worked on seems to be located directly in the center of the park. The fountain and little streams going to it are at least gone for now, as you can see:

The Center of the Nickelodeon Universe

This attraction will go straight up like the Power Tower at Valleyfair, I guess. With these additions, it will make the recreational area of the Mall of America a somewhat exciting place to be.

In other Mall of America Phase II news, there is finally some changes happening in the location of the expansion. Here's a couple snapshots I got:

Mall of America Phase II Beginnings

Mall of America Phase II Beginnings

In the second photo, there's a number of dumpsters, although I don't know what they're full of. Towards the far right of the second photo is the dirt and machines where they may be digging in order to start building. However, by all plans I've seen, that area seems to be the area assigned to a Great Wolf Lodge hotel/waterpark connected to the Mall of America. (I expect the Waterpark of America is already beginning to shut down.)

I've been unable to find any concrete information on when or if the Mall of America Phase II expansion will happen, but since I work nearby, I guess you can expect some updates when I find somehting.

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