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Carowinds Theme Park Opens For 2013 Season

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(Photo by UWE ZUCCHI/AFP/Getty Images)

(Photo by UWE ZUCCHI/AFP/Getty Images)

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (CBS Charlotte) — For all of you thrill seekers out there — Carowinds theme park opened its gates this morning, for the 2013 season! Now in its 41st season, the theme park has added a new attraction called “Dinosaurs Alive!

The new attraction sits on 5 acres of land and replaces what used to be a picnic area. “Dinosaurs Alive!” includes 32 life-sized dinosaurs — with plenty that roar and can move at the command of visitors.

Visitors of the new attraction can also watch a 3-D movie — all about dinosaurs.

Other updates to the park include a new picnic and catering center which is capable of serving 15,000 people per day, and upgrades to Thunder Road, the theme parks classic wooden roller coaster.

Here are some interesting facts that you might not know about Carowinds theme park:

-  Carowinds opened on the last day of March 1973, and originally occupied 73 acres of land.

- Today, the theme park occupies 398 acres of land.

- The theme park is located on the border, between North and South Carolina. Parts of Carowinds are in Charlotte, while other parts of the theme park are in Fort Mill, South Carolina.

- Initially, the park cost $70 million dollars to build.

- Charlotte businessman, Earl Patterson Hall, originally came up with the idea to build the theme park. However, he was forced to sell Carowinds two years after it was built — due to financial woes.

- The name “Carowinds” is a combination of Carolina and winds. It was derived from being located in the Carolinas and for the winds that are said to “blow across” North and South Carolina.

- In 2000, the park introduced SCarowinds, an annual Halloween attraction.

- Over the last 41 years, Carowinds has had four different owners.

For ticket information, click here.

-Nichole Jaworski, CBS Charlotte

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