By Brady MacDonald
7:45 AM PDT, April 9, 2013
This summer, a Belgian theme park will add an $8-million Viking land based on a television cartoon and movie series with two rides and a restaurant set in a lakeside village.
The 12-acre Vicky the Viking themed land will be built on the location of a former theater at Belgium's Plopsaland De Panne, located along the North Sea about 90 minutes west of Brussels.
A clever but timid 10-year-old boy who lives in a Viking village, Vicky is the star of a German-Austrian television cartoon series and the "Wickie the Viking" live-action films.
The centerpiece of the new land will be an interactive boat ride built by Germany's Mack Rides. In the awkwardly named Vicky the Battle, riders will shoot at each other with water cannons as they travel in Viking ships across a man-made lake.
The backdrop of the land will be a Disk’O shuttle coaster built by Italy's Zamperla with a track themed to look like 50-foot-tall granite cliffs. Riders on the Great Wave will sit on a spinning platform with outward-facing seats that travels at 45 mph along an undulating half-pipe track. The platform will be themed to look like a Viking ship with dragon-shaped prows, red-and-white striped sails and Gokstad shields.
The land will also include a gift shop aptly named Vicky's Shop, the Viking Grill sit-down restaurant and Halvar's sandwich stand, named after Vicky's bearded and eye-patch wearing father.
Plopsaland De Panne is one of five theme parks run by Studio 100, which produces Vicky the Viking. Plopsa Coo, another Belgium park, opened the Vicky the Ride spinning coaster by Gerstlauer in 2011.
As part of the expansion, Plopsaland De Panne will also open the 1,300-seat Groot Theater that will present shows and concerts based on Studio 100 characters.
For the 2014 season, Plopsaland De Panne plans to add the PlopsaAqua water park and a hotel.
Copyright © 2013, Los Angeles Times