September 29, 2012

Paradise Pier Before the Makeover

Old Paradise Pier Orange Stinger Maliboomer DCA
Way back before the Cozy Cones existed in Cars Land, Disney California Adventure harbored another bright orange landmark. But this one didn't serve Chili Cone Queso. Epcot has Spaceship Earth, but DCA had the Orange Stinger. Insert sad trombone music here.

And right next door, you can see the now-gone towers of the Maliboomer ride, which was supposed to resemble a gigantic test-of-strength mallet game. For some strange reason, that end of Paradise Pier had a "giant" theme going on, as it also hosted the giant hamburger UFO at the long-gone McDonald's Burger Invasion (barely visible on the left there).

Appearances aside, the problem with Orange Stinger was that it contained a circular swing ride, and the ride's views were mostly blocked by the surrounding orange peel. The experience felt like spinning around inside a dockside warehouse.

Maliboomer was a fun, scary ride, but it looked tacky and too modern for the Pier's theme.

In 2012's DCA, Orange Stinger has become the open-air Silly Symphony Swings and the Maliboomer's given way to...some planters. The removal of both original structures has greatly improved the believability of Paradise Pier's old-time boardwalk atmosphere.

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