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Gilroy Gardens, Gilroy, California

This is Franklin.  He is the chief bubble maker at Gilroy Gardens.  As you can see he excels at his work.

Gilroy Gardens, Gilroy, California

In my opinion the heart of any great amusement park is a classic carousel.  Gilroy Gardens is a great amusement park and situated at the end of the long tree covered entrance path into into the park sits the M.C. Illions Supreme Carousel that dates from 1927.

Gilroy Gardens, Gilroy, California

Gilroy Gardens began back in the 1970's despite not opening to the public until 2001.

Gilroy Gardens, Gilroy, California

The entire park began with Michael Bonfante.  In the 1970's he was in the middle of massively expanding his families Nob Hill Grocery store chain and you could easily describe his life as high stress.  In order to take a little stress out of his life and lower his blood pressure he headed into the woods to relax.  This started a love affair with trees and nature.  Wanting a little corner of nature to transform into an escape from the real world he purchased acreage in Gilroy, California and began creating this masterpiece.

There is more of his story coming but after fast forwarding decades to today you can see that what he created is a horticultural theme park.  The Garlic Twist is a tea cup style ride with the cups replaced by garlic cloves.  A side note if you live in the United States and like garlic; as I do, most of it is produced in the vicinity of Gilroy Gardens.

Gilroy Gardens, Gilroy, California

Beyond the themed up rides another feature of Gilroy Gardens are the "circus trees" that are living works of art.  We will get into those more in depth later but first lets spend some time with one of Gilroy Gardens roller coasters.



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Paul B. Drabek