Monday, June 7, 2010

in search of some kickapoo joy juice

back in the early eighties when i was barely a teenager, i passed through the ozarks while traveling with family. from the back seat of the wayward car i spied the formidable fiberglass man that is known as Li'l Abner. moments later i saw a sign for Dogpatch, USA and i was hooked. we were on our way to Silver Dollar City in Missouri and all i wanted was to head on back up the road in search of yokum juice and Daisy Mae. the idea and imagery remained with me for decades.with the onset of the world wide web, one of the first things i looked up was Dogpatch, I HAD to go there. Li'l Abner was one of my favorite movies (both versions). sure it is cheezier than all get out but the singing, dancing and hillbilly couture still has me mooning for the whole place. besides, we wouldn't have had Sadie Hawkins Day without it, right?sadly, hillbillies went out of vogue and Dogpatch closed sometime in 1993. rumor had it though that you could still see what was left of Dogpatch from the hwy and you could even sneak right in and roam around. once we decided to take this crazy trip, i made sure that Dogpatch was a pin in the map.

once we hit hwy 7, we kept our eye out for what remained of Dogpatch, i spotted a funky old swing bridge and some shack-ike buildings but thought nothing of it until we came to the skeletal remains of a las vegas-like sign, it must be Dogpatch.there were words of NO TRESPASSING and the gate was wrapped up wily-nily with an enormous rusty chain. if we could have parked rodney anywhere else, we would have gone all renegade and slipped under the gate but we couldn't and rodney sat there like a beacon hollering TRESPASSERS! TRESPASSERS!instead we tramped through the thick weedy grass and speculated at the collection of falling down shacks. me in my whimsical thinking still imagined there would be color floating about but instead we only saw flying things and an assortment of squatting, broken down RVs.see more pictures here
crazyisthenewsane has an awesome flickr set as well.


  1. As soon as I finish catching up with you guys I'm going to goggle this Dogpatch you speak of. Wonder if the property is for sale? Be safe.

  2. That's sad! I never even heard about Dogpatch, or the park before…though looking through pictures it honestly reminds me of Dollywood. Perhaps you can go there to get your hillbilly fix? It's so corny but so awesome at the same time.

    As I was looking at the photos you linked, the sad dilapidated park depressed me so I wanted to see what the park looked like in its heyday. I found this and I dunno if you've seen these photos or not, but being a fan you probably have seen something similar. Anyway, in case you haven't:



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