Goodbye, Bedrock City: Arizona's Flintstones Theme Park Has Closed After Nearly 50 Years

Thomas Hawk, Flickr // CC BY-NC 2.0
Thomas Hawk, Flickr // CC BY-NC 2.0

Fred, Wilma, and Pebbles have been evicted from Bedrock. Arizona’s Bedrock City has been welcoming fans of The Flintstones for nearly 50 years, but all that has come to an end, according to the Arizona Republic. The quirky roadside attraction along Route 64 in Valle has shut down.

The property is located about 30 minutes from the Grand Canyon, so it’s a prime spot for attracting tourists who are passing through the area, but this isn't the end of its run as a roadside attraction. The paper reports that the pterodactyl statue at Bedrock—and almost everything else in the park—will be replaced by other winged creatures.

The current owner, Troy Morris, is a raptor breeder, and he plans to open an attraction called Raptor Ranch on the site. The park will become a showcase for birds of prey like falcons, hawks, and eagles, with daily performances highlighting the birds' hunting skills.

A drive-through volcano structure at Bedrock City
mlhradio, Flickr // CC BY-NC 2.0

These plans mark the end of an era for Bedrock City, which opened in the 1972. The site’s owners erected replicas of the Flintstone and Rubble residences, as well as a schoolhouse, jail, and theater. Guests could go down a brontosaurus-shaped slide, drive through a “volcano,” and snap photos with lots of recognizable characters from the classic cartoon.

A view of Bedrock City
Matthew Dillon, Flickr // CC BY 2.0

The park originally hired actors to entertain the guests, but the site’s remote location made it difficult to retain employees. Over the years, the park fell into disrepair, and the property was eventually put up for sale in 2015.

The mid-20th century was a great time for pop culture-themed roadside attractions, and Bedrock City was one of many. Another Flintstones-themed park opened in Custer, South Dakota in 1966, while 1970 brought a Wizard of Oz theme park to North Carolina. Unfortunately, many of these parks didn't last. South Dakota's Bedrock City shut down in 2015, the same year the Arizona park was put up for sale. The Land of Oz in North Carolina lay abandoned for decades, though it occasionally reopens for special events.

A dinosaur slide
mlhradio, Flickr // CC BY-NC 2.0

There’s one small consolation for Bedrock fans, though: The Valle park's signature dinosaur slide will be kept intact, as will the saber-toothed cat and woolly mammoth statues, which will become part of a children's playground that the new owner, Troy Morris, plans to build.

"I understand people's emotional attachment, but it's time in a business sense for something new," Morris told the Arizona Republic. "But we're definitely going to keep a little piece of Bedrock."

[h/t Arizona Republic]

The ChopBox Smart Cutting Board Has a Food Scale, Timer, and Knife Sharper Built Right Into It

ChopBox
ChopBox

When it comes to furnishing your kitchen with all of the appliances necessary to cook night in and night out, you’ll probably find yourself running out of counter space in a hurry. The ChopBox, which is available on Indiegogo and dubs itself “The World’s First Smart Cutting Board,” looks to fix that by cramming a bunch of kitchen necessities right into one cutting board.

In addition to giving you a knife-resistant bamboo surface to slice and dice on, the ChopBox features a built-in digital scale that weighs up to 6.6 pounds of food, a nine-hour kitchen timer, and two knife sharpeners. It also sports a groove on its surface to catch any liquid runoff that may be produced by the food and has a second pull-out cutting board that doubles as a serving tray.

There’s a 254nm UVC light featured on the board, which the company says “is guaranteed to kill 99.99% of germs and bacteria" after a minute of exposure. If you’re more of a traditionalist when it comes to cleanliness, the ChopBox is completely waterproof (but not dishwasher-safe) so you can wash and scrub to your heart’s content without worry. 

According to the company, a single one-hour charge will give you 30 days of battery life, and can be recharged through a Micro USB port.

The ChopBox reached its $10,000 crowdfunding goal just 10 minutes after launching its campaign, but you can still contribute at different tiers. Once it’s officially released, the ChopBox will retail for $200, but you can get one for $100 if you pledge now. You can purchase the ChopBox on Indiegogo here.

Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers and may receive a small percentage of any sale. But we choose all products independently and only get commission on items you buy and don't return, so we're only happy if you're happy. Thanks for helping us pay the bills!

Which Friends Character Would Earn the Most Money in the Real World?

Warner Bros. Television/Hulton Archive/Getty Images
Warner Bros. Television/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Although Friends went off the air in 2004, the iconic sitcom continues to attract new fans who've discovered the show via re-runs and streaming networks like HBO Max.

To play into this devoted fan base, the professional resume writers at StandOut-CV conducted a fun experiment: They asked more than 3000 fans to predict where Joey, Ross, Rachel, Chandler, Phoebe, and Monica would be today, career-wise. They also took the time to figure out how much each character would earn in their respective fields in the real world. Could we be more curious?

Bringing in the highest salary is Joey, whose acting exploits are projected to earn him approximately $61,022 a year. Next comes Dr. Ross, whose career as a paleontologist brings in an estimated $59,023. After that comes fashion designer Rachel, earning $54,563 a year, followed by Chandler's writer/editor salary of $47,039 annually. Phoebe comes next, with her musical career bringing in an annual salary of $43,604 (although the site doesn't mention how her massage therapy business might factor into her life today). Surprisingly, Monica would bring in the least amount of money; she'd earn an average of $43,165 per year as a head chef.

As far as where fans think the Friends gang would be today, the answers are pretty great: They believe Joey would have expanded his acting career to include his own reality series called Keeping Up With Joey Tribbiani. Monica, meanwhile, would have taken the next step in her culinary career by opening up her own restaurant, and her husband Chandler would have continued his passion for writing at a comics magazine. The last season of Friends follows Rachel as she works as an executive for Ralph Lauren, and fans theorize that she would have used her breadth of experience to start her own fashion brand. It's believed Phoebe would have continued her music career, perhaps even becoming a music teacher, while Ross would have spent time writing dinosaur-themed children's books.

Hopefully, the upcoming Friends reunion special will give fans a final answer on what the characters would be up to today.