Out in the Mojave, relentlessly dusted by the sands, mercilessly vandalized by taggers and teenagers, stands a monument to perseverance. Originally built in 1962, the Lake Dolores Waterpark has had many incarnations and gone by many names. It was purchased by Bob Byers and first conceived as a simple man-made lake named after his wife, Dolores. Over the years, as Motocross enthusiasts and wearied travelers of the interstate frequented the lake in increasing numbers, rides and attractions were added and the lake was transformed into a fully-fledged water park.
In its heyday, the park was host to waterslides, zip-lines, bumper boats, diving boards and a JetSki racetrack. With the passage of time, though, popularity waned and the park was closed. Over the decades, several entrepreneurs have attempted to rebrand and revitalize the site. In 1998, the park (now named Rock-A-Hoola) was reopened with a 50s theme, including classic cars and rockin’ oldies playing on speakers throughout the park. The park did not last two years before it filed for bankruptcy.
Once again an investor, with the dream of creating an oasis in the barren Mojave desert, purchased and renovated the waterpark. Once again, two years after opening, this venture went belly up as well. The park has been closed since 2004. In the time since it has been host to skate videos, served as venue for impromptu music concerts and used as canvas for guerrilla art. Its slides have been sold piecemeal to other parks, its buildings’ walls have been kicked in and tagged, and the pools which once held water now slowly fill with desert sand.
Even now, despite the desolation and ruin, another investor has announced plans to reopen the park. It stands as a testament to tenacity against the harsh sun and sandy winds of the desert. The dream of an oasis that will not die. Despite the bold guerrilla art proclamation that greets you as you enter the park, as long as there are those who attempt to create something better with what they are given, perhaps the future won’t be blight after all.
Rock-A-Hoola TV Commercial: http://www.youtube...atch?v=Uuj6_SxlHZI
Guerrilla Art Group portfolio: http://www.trustocorp.com/street/