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Myrtle Beach Pavilion and Amusement Park
Myrtle Beach, SC

This is a nice little park on the South Carolina shore that has changed tremendously since I was a kid. The Pavilion is (or at least used to be) the name of the giant ocean-front arcade across the street from the amusement park. Now the name has become synonymous with both the park and the arcade (or maybe just the park, any more ...)

When I was younger, the star attraction was "The Corkscrew" (a Arrow coaster featuring back-to-back corkscrews). This was my first ever "upside-down" ride and became a favorite of mine. It also had an S.D.C. "Galaxi" coaster, which was one of the first coasters (if not the first coaster) I ever rode. At the time, the "Galaxi" was at the very back of the park. Now, the place where it used to stand is maybe about mid-way through the park! The park also had two Ferris wheels side-by-side at the front ("Big Eli", they called them), offering a nice view of the ocean. It was closed and dismantled in '91 (because of an accident caused by some teenagers rocking the car they were riding in.) But that's enough about that. There was a ride-through haunted house (that played "The Monster Mash", I believe ...) that was pretty good. The building featured a gigantic skeleton face (with glowing eyes and a moving jaw!) in the center of the building with the skeleton's hands (with moving fingers) poking out windows on either end of the building. This Haunted Inn is now called the Haunted Hotel and looks more like the Bates Motel from Psycho (no skeleton to be found anywhere! Don't know if the ride has changed inside or not.) The park also featured an enclosed scrambler ride (the "Mind Scrambler"), complete with artificial fog machines, strobe lights, lasers, and a disco ball. When the Hurricane ride was added to the park, the Mind Scrambler lost its covering (and all of the "special effects" that came with it.) Bummer.

OK, so enough of the nostalgic "what rides have gone before." There are plenty of "old" rides that are still there. The Log Flume was always one of my favorites. There was also an antique car ride that wound its way beside, under, and around the Log Flume. Added sometime in the 80's or early 90's is the Rainbow, a HUSS spinning ride giving a wonderful view of the ocean. Also featured is my favorite Wave Swinger ride (pretty during the day, gorgeous at night! Picture coming soon!)

Now there are some new rides (most of which I haven't been on -- added since I last went), but I'll give you the low-down on them anyway: The Hurricane Category 5 is a new (in 2000) coaster, wooden rails on a steel structure. From what I hear, it's very fast, very intense, and the two helices (helixes?) are great. Nice view of the ocean. I still resent it for displacing the Corkscrew. I'll get over it ... Then there's the Mad Mouse. I've actually ridden that one. Very fast and wild, but awfully rough on the turns. Not sure if I liked it or not. Then there's Chaos (a spinning and flipping ride) that was a little too much for me, and the Top Spin (which flips you around and around several times, while you scream in terror.) If you're looking for a great wet ride, try the HydroSurge -- a white-water rapids ride that is short but intense and comes complete with water canons on the side operated by your friends and family watching you go by!

The park itself is really nice and pretty, and at night with everything lit up, it's absolutely beautiful. All of downtown Myrtle Beach is pretty nice, to be honest. The park is very clean, there's a wide variety of rides for everyone, and the rides are fun and worth riding again and again. I need to go back and check it out now that they've put in the Hurricane ...

Ride List

Former Rides

Current Rides
Page last updated Wednesday, February 13, 2002.