Rock a Hoola, Ghost Water Park
I was driving to Las Vegas with my hubby and he started telling me about this abandoned water park, located in the middle of The Mojave Dessert, just east of Barstow. I was so fascinated with the part about it having it’s own radio station, and playing it’s own version of the song, Rock-A-Hula, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
It was the beginning of Elvis’ song, Rock-A-Hula, without the rest of it.
Rock a hula, rock, rock a hula. Rock a hula, rock, rock a hula. Rock a hula, rock rock a hula. Rock a hula, rock, rock a hula. Rock a hula, rock, rock a hula. Rock a hula, rock, rock a hula. Rock a hula, rock, rock a hula. Rock a hula, rock, rock a hula. Rock a hula, rock, rock a hula. Rock a hula, rock, rock a hula.
Looped over and over and over again.
This place opened in May of 1962, went through several owners, and name changes. Lake Dolores, being it’s most well known, Rock-A-Hoola (my personal favorite), and then The Discovery Water Park. In it’s glory days, as soon as you got to within 100 miles of it, there was a choice of 2 radio stations, one of them being The Rock-A-Hoola station. I’m guessing, to intrigue and entice passing motorists . I can’t imagine what the few locals in the not so near by towns thought of it. I can imagine someone flipping back and forth between radio stations trying to decide on one.
Rock-A-Hoola fell to ruins after an accident that happened in 1999, which lead to a lawsuit, that bankrupted the owner. While off the clock an employee went on a water slide that was not in full operational mode. He asked a fellow employee to turn on the Doo Wop Super Drop, because “it was always very busy during park hours”, so he could catch a quick ride before clocking in. This resulted in 23 year old Jimmy Mason, becoming paraplegic and winning a 4.4 million dollar lawsuit. Rock-A-Hoola was finally closed for good in 2004.
It has since been purchased by new owners that are looking for investors and efforts are being made to open it as early as 2015. Good luck and God speed. It is a sad story all around. A mans dream water park and radio station all snatched away in an instant for a front of the line pass, to ride the Doo Wop Super Drop.
Here is a fantastic blog I read about it with a great pictorial.