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Land of Oz adds new effects to attraction PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 17 July 2017 12:26


Upgrades modernize classic scenes to tourist attraction

• Leader & Times

Liberal residents regard the Coronado Museum and Dorothy’s House/The Land of Oz as an important and wonderful fixture in the community. In the past year and a half, staff has been working to keep up that magic on all parts of the campus. 

“First, we upgraded the Coronado Museum – we painted, we got some new windows here,” Director JoAnne Mansell said. “With Dorothy’s House, we painted and we have new roofs, and two of our out-buildings have been stained, so it’s a continual process. Currently, we’re working on the Land of Oz, and with that being said, we’re taking it one section at a time. We have a new tornado scene. As you go into Munchkinland, we have changed up the Munchkins some. The Scarecrow actually talks to you, there’s a conversation with the Scarecrow. We’re working on verbiage for the Tin Man and the Cowardly Lion, and we hope to have that part completed by OzFest in October. We have a lot of great helpers, including Jim Rice, Earl Watt, Gary Warden, just to name a few – all of them pushed up their sleeves and helped us.”

With 13,000 and 15,000 visitors being seen at the museum every year, the changes are all new for several of the visitors. 

“We’re trying to make it to where it’s your adventure with Dorothy in the Land of Oz,” Coronado Museum and Dorothy’s House/Land of Oz employee Jessica Malin said. “You’ve been dropped in the middle of the story book with Dorothy. We wanted it to be more of an interactive experience – like JoAnne said, we’re not only writing a script for the Tin Man and the Cowardly Lion, but we also have some new stuff for The Wizard, and in the future, we’re going to have Glinda come down in a bubble to visit a couple times. Basically, we’re working on the whole thing and getting it little by little and hopefully, by OzFest, it will be completed, and it will be a new interactive experience.”

Mansell said it was time for the projects to get done, and Malin added staff is really excited about the work that has already been completed along with the work to come. 

“One of our biggest improvements on the Land of Oz is our tornado scene, and we want to have at least a couple more big impact scenes like that,” Malin said. “We’re trying to make that the Wicked Witch’s Castle and like she’ll come out of nowhere and hopefully scare people a little bit and give them a fright. Then we want to make The Wizard ... of course, he is the great and powerful Wizard of Oz, so we want to make him great and powerful, about like he was in the movie. We’re trying to make it the best it can be, and even for the people who have been there a million times, even with returning customers, we want to give them something to look forward to. For those who may never have seen the movie, you still get a lot of the storyline, but we want to make it our own and a new experience, so even if they’ve never seen it, they can still follow along and think ‘Oh man, this is really cool!’ We’re excited for the new updates to come along and bring everything into the 21st century.”

After a lot of thought and planning, Malin said the changes made sense to undertake. 

“Right now, the Dorothys tell all the story and they say everything for all the characters, including Dorothy herself,” Malin said. “So we just thought the interactive stuff would be really cool because we’ve seen other exhibits and demonstrations to where they bring characters to life and have that magical aspect to it, and we want to make this to where Dorothy’s not just leading you along and telling you her story, but how you came along with her and experienced it. We wanted to convey that as much as possible, so that’s how a lot of that came about. We wanted to make it a little more magical.”

That magic, Malin said, will be amazing for those who come to the campus and see everything. 

“Even if you’ve been out here before, it’s going to be a new experience for you, and if you haven’t been out here yet, I would definitely suggest coming out here because it’s a really cool project and we’re hoping it will all be a really cool experience for everyone,” Malin said. “Just come out and support us, we really appreciate it.”




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