Spirit of California theme park coming to Tracy

Spirit of California theme park coming to Tracy

Spirit of California

When we think about theme parks in California, our minds usually go straight to Disneyland in Anaheim,  Six Flags in Valencia or even Universal Studios in Universal City. Unfortunately for Northern California residents, most of these main attractions are located in Southern California. This means either six hours of driving, one hour on the plane or a seven-hour trip by train just to reach these rides.

However, what if you heard that a huge theme park in Northern California is currently in the making? For Northern Californians, the time it takes to get to a theme park could be shortened to a one- to two-hour drive — or, if you are residing in Tracy, Calif., you just might find a theme park as your new neighbor.

A colossal theme park in Tracy may be in the planning stages. Tracy is currently the second most populated city in San Joaquin County, which makes this city a perfect location for this proposed project. The park developers are going in with the mindset to exceed every expectation possible. Furthermore, they envision this theme park to outperform Disneyland and earn the No. 1 spot for California’s entertainment destination, all with their budget of $1.2 billion.

Although it hasn’t been officially announced whether the amusement park will become a reality or remain languishing in the development stage, the word is this destination will feature not only rides and attractions, but will also include a casino, hotel, convention center and race track.

So when are the developers going to make their formal announcement? The developers’ time frame projects getting out of the development stage within the next two years and having the park in operation by the year 2024.

Nonetheless, the fact that this amusement park will not be operational for almost another decade gives Disneyland the chance to plan different possibilities with their seemingly endless finances. With that said, is $1.2 billion enough? More importantly, where is this billion-dollar-project funding coming from, with the U.S.’s current economic status?

If this project becomes a reality, whether the amusement park, Spirit of California, would outshine Disneyland is debatable. The amenities at Spirit of California will bring entertainment to everyone in the family. For example, grandparents can go gambling in the casino while the kids go to the amusement park. This attraction will also give cities in Northern California, such as Tracy, more recognition and revenue.

Residents in Northern California will be given the convenience to live close to a theme park, especially if they have families. But perhaps the most important benefit to Spirit of California is that this theme park, along with all its amenities, would provide tremendous job opportunities.

Of course, Disneyland holds a very large share of the entertainment market and such a loyal following that Disneyland’s name alone will most likely allow it to maintain its dominance. However, Spirit of California also caters to a different market than Disneyland. From my perspective, Spirit of California seems to be more adult-oriented, while Disneyland is more for kids. Thus, comparing popularity could be like comparing apples to oranges.

Although this park’s opening may seem like centuries from now, at least they have the name already figured out: Spirit of California. With that said, visit Spirit of California online to keep up with the latest news and sign the petition if you support the construction of this theme park.

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Sarah Hong