Tuesday, July 07, 2015

Los Angeles Ad Town: The Waterpark Ruins in Tony Hawk's New Commercial

In a new spot for Mini Cooper (above), Tony Hawk and his family sneak into an abandoned waterpark to skate:

Lake Dolores

Lake Dolores

Of course, anyone who takes the 15 to Las Vegas recognizes it as the remains to Lake Dolores and Rock-A-Hoola, a failed water park in the middle of the desert (Newberry Springs, to be exact).

Of course, in these drought times, the idea of a waterpark that deep into the desert is preposterous. But it was always a crazy idea. Yet, Lake Dolores had been around for decades before it went bust 15 years ago.

Here's what the front of the water park looks like now, via the Mini ad:

Lake Dolores

And here's what it looked like in full operation:

Lake Dolores

I wrote about it in 2011:
Opened by Bob and Dolores (the park's namesake) Byers in 1962, Lake Dolores is considered one of the first -- if not the first -- water parks in the country.

A popular recreational attraction for much of the 1970s and 1980s, it finally shut down in the late 1980s. Ten years later, in the late 1990s, it reopened as the 1950s-themed "Rock-A-Hoola." Here's a promo video from 1998:

The new owners went bankrupt, and it shut down for good by 2004. Since then the water attractions have been removed and the location has been vandalized. Now, it's a spooky shell of its former self. See more at my 2011 post here.

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