The Land of Oz was a fully functioning theme park that operated between 1970-1980 at the Town of Beech Mountain near Banner Elk, NC. It was the brainchild of designer Jack Pentes and built by Grover Robbins and his brothers Harry and Spencer through their company Carolina Caribbean Corporation. Land of Oz would be a top-quality experience during its first five seasons. After a fire at the Emerald City in 1975, the park was slowly rebuilt under new management from the 1976 season until it closed in the fall of 1980.
Between 1985 and 1988, parts of the park were demolished due to excessive vandalism and decay. Included in this was the Emerald City amphitheater stage, gift shops, and balloon ride. However, much of the park was saved including the Gale farmhouse, barn, and most of the yellow brick road. Starting in 1988, a reunion of original park employees, known as the “Ozzies,” ignited the yearly re-openings which has since become known as the Autumn at Oz Festival. Funds from this, and other events, have gone back into restoring and maintaining the park for future generations.
Currently, while Land of Oz is not a fully functioning theme park, but it offers many public events that celebrate the magic and legacy of all things Oz!