Tuesday Oct 21 2008
Folsom’s Ghost Train a work of passion for creator
By: Don Chaddock, The Telegraph
Animatronics, the art of making life-like mannequins move and react to motion, is a staple at Disneyland with rides such as the Haunted House and Pirates of the Caribbean – as well as Folsom’s Ghost Train. What started as a hobby for Fair Oaks resident Larry Scholl has turned into a regular Halloween ride at Folsom City Lions Park on Natoma Street. Scholl knows a thing or two about storytelling – he’s been employed by Disney on various films and TV shows including “Mulan” and the new “Tinker Bell” movie opening this fall. “We have no live actors in (the Ghost Train),” Scholl said. “It’s all animatronic.” He said there are more than 50 animated characters on the ride and the ride grows each year. “This is our fifth year,” Scholl said. “I look back and don’t know how it got this big.” His day job finds him behind the drawing board working on the animation storyboards for Disney and other companies. Scholl said he adds something to the ride every year and when the season passes, the characters are removed and used elsewhere. This year, Scholl worked through the city to receive his permits and operate the Ghost Train as an official business. Giving the ride a try was 6-year-old Jason Riviello of Roseville. “It was kind of scary and it was fun,” he said. “The big dog that came up with scary. We’re going to come back.” The ride runs Thursday through Sunday all the way through Halloween.from 7 to 9 p.m. Tickets are $8 per person. For more information, call 965-1217 or visit larryscholl.net. The Telegraph’s Don Chaddock may be reached at email@example.com or by phone at 351-3753.