OLE SOUTH BOULEVARD is two blocks of charming southern small town nostalgia stretching from the park entrance to the park Commons where you begin your journey to the different lands in Ole South. The unique shops, the horse-drawn carriages, the amazing architectural details, and even the smell of fresh pastries in the air all make Ole South Boulevard an attraction in and of itself.
SWW: The resort's Magnolia logo would be featured in the paving design in front of the gates/ticket booths. Guest services is located in a Southern church or a meeting hall on the Town Green just past the Railroad Bridge. Horse-drawn buggies would be boarded around a gazebo on the left side of the Green. The train has stops at New South, the Hotel, the Working Farm and Countryside.
THE COMMONS: As you are standing with your back towards the Boulevard you will be looking at Ole South Mansion and Commons. The gardens will be full of many varieties of foliage and flowers and walking paths will be abundant to enjoy this scenery. Inside the Ole South Mansion will be a restaurant with space available for special events such as weddings, reunions and corporate meetings. On the back side of the mansion is a grassy area with an amphitheater on Ole South Lake for you to spread a blanket, listen to a concert, watch a fireworks show and close down the park for the night.
SWW: The extensive paths & gardens directly adjacent to the mansion would be the most formal, and they would get wilder the further from the center (especially on the Appalachia side with a 'natural' stream running through the wooded area). You’ll note a patio for exclusive outdoor dining overlooking the lake/fireworks. There is a portico at the front of the Mansion so horse-drawn carriages can drop off VIPs (e.g. a wedding couple). The Mansion would be at a slightly higher elevation with the amphitheater descending gently to the lake’s edge. The grass lawns here would be accessible for picnics and blankets. There is a band shell just off shore.
Take a sharp left turn at the park Commons and make your way down to COUNTRYSIDE. Countryside is themed after the farmland of the South. The main icon is a large red barn with a silo. Inside the barn is a 4-D barnyard frolic show where you will jump out of your seat as a raging bull comes charging out of the screen at you, chicken feathers fly through the air, and of course you will get a whiff of those traditional barnyard smells. Also at Countryside you’ll be able to ride a silo freefall, a roller coaster based on a stockyard, enjoy a country music show, an animal actors’ show, and then take a train to a working farm featuring a corn maze and a the petting zoo for the little ones. These are just a few of the attractions in Countryside. There are more rides, restaurants and shopping for everyone.
SWW: I imagined the Tin Lizzies ride as a fairly long, but gentle family ride aboard old Model Ts through various country scenes. The woody coaster has a stockyard farm theme. I imagined the freefall ride featuring an extensive indoor queue/pre-show which sets up a haunted barn/farm story, culminating in the drop ride portion.
Standing at the park Commons facing Ole South Mansion, you will want to take a sharp right to find APPALACHIA and the mountainous area of Ole South. Bluegrass music is abundant throughout "these here hills" and the main icon is the Clingman’s Doom, themed after the tallest mountain in Tennessee, and home to two thrilling rides. You will not want to miss the Davy Crockett Wilderness Stunt Show. See Colonel Crockett fend off river pirates, grin down a bear and save the day with his excellent marksmanship. Speaking of black bears, you'll be able to get up close and personal with'm in Ole South's state-of-the-art black bear habitat. ATV Southern Safari is a dark ride that has you using "laser-barreled" shotguns shooting wild game and skeet accumulating points as you journey through the backwoods of Appalachia. Storytelling, a BBQ restaurant, rides for the little ones, crafts, retail shops and Irish dancing are just a few of the venues in the land of Appalachia.
SWW: This heavily-wooded area is reached by crossing a bridge from the Commons. The first thing one comes upon is the Craftsman Village (small shingled huts and cabins) and a large BBQ restaurant. Clingman’s Doom is the big mountain of the park and it is home to a terrain-hugging coaster that passes through the mountain (tunnels) several times. The park's log flume shares the mountain, also passing through several caverns, but having its queue on the opposite side. It think merging these two major attractions into one large artificial mountain would be visually exciting and allow the park to leverage costs. Blackbear Mountain is a large-scale animal exhibit with various regional animals (cougars, bears, deer) roaming in what appears to be “the wild”.
NEW SOUTH is forward and to the right from the park Commons and it is themed after the cities of the South. The main icon looking down the walkway at New South is a silhouette of skyscrapers from southern cities. Here you will find a musical salute the troops patriotic show with a surprise guest every week. A thrilling ride themed after stock-car racing will be part of this land. City Park play area for the young ones will be a major venue in New South. Upscale dining, delis and fast food will be part of this area, as well as an art gallery for Southern Artists to showcase their work. A ride based on college football is a goal of the developers. Throughout New South are rides for smaller children along with many unique retail shops.
SWW: A triumphal arch (inspired by Atlanta’s millennial arch) marks the entrance from the Commons to this urban area, with the faux skyscrapers in the distance. When thinking about how to represent Stockcar racing via a thrill ride, I imagined a slot-racers type system, with cars rapidly accelerating, hitting highly banked turns, and finishing in a blacked-out, strobe-lit tunnel (that passes beneath City Park).
From the Commons area this time you will go forward left to get to SOUTHERN SHORES, which is themed after Charleston and New Orleans and the coastal areas of the South. The icon of Southern Shores is a lighthouse where guests can view the park from high above. In Southern Shores, there is a Mississippi River rafting ride where river pirates will get you wet with water guns if you don’t watch out. Blues and Jazz music will be abundant throughout this land. '3D and the Sea' is a dark ride that will amaze you with the beauty and danger of our ocean as you ride in your sea-mobile along the ocean floor. On your journey to Southern Shores, stop to listen to the sounds of an African American church revival musical show. On the boardwalk of Charleston are many activities and rides including a ferris wheel, carousel, bumper cars, eateries and gift shops.
SWW: Approaching this land from the Commons, the Jubillee church is on a small hill to the left. Visitors can choose two paths: Right leads to Atlantic Coast/Charleston side with a Morris Island-inspired lighthouse beckoning. The left path leads to the Gulf Coast/New Orleans side, with French Quarter influences and a jazz gazebo park. The Mississippi River Pirates raft ride, at one point, merges with the wider “Mississippi River” that slowly empties into the lake. There are boats on the Charleston side to the Sumter Island exploration/education attraction.
The hotel might represent Antebellum southern architecture. I thought a Riverboat could house a bar/restaurant/casino or be used for sightseeing cruises on the lake. The lakeside promenade would eventually lead to other areas of the resort (like the Campground, 2nd hotel or water park).