The Carnival has come to town at Thorpe Park Resort this summer and with the smell of popcorn in the air, not everything is as it seems. A familiar face has returned in The Junkyard and whisperings around the area speak of the return of a famous character from The Big Top - Bozo. His name is banned and just the mention of his name will leave you being looked at funny in the main Carnival arena. Located in two areas, The Junkyard and Carnival. This is the biggest event the park has done since Fright Nights. Talking of Fright Nights, Trailers has been taken over by a bunch of clowns and super fans of Bozo’s Playzone. The film “Back 2 Play” is premiering and this once scary 12+ maze has been toned down for fun for all the family, but don’t be fooled if it's just a bunch of adults in your group they can turn up the scariness and get you jumping out of your skin just like a Fright Nights evening.
To make the start of the day, the Ringleader of carnival kicks off the day’s festivities with a show like no other! Although sometimes interrupted by Rusty the clown and his fellow clowns this show really sets the scene for the day. Featuring all of the cast from The Junkyard and the main carnival area, this show is a great introduction to some of the characters your see throughout the day. Dancing, music, mimes, magicians and clowns, what more do you want out of a show? We thoroughly enjoy this show and it feels like the park has really taken a big step forward in family entertainment. At Mardi Gras, we were wowed with that stage show but for Carnival and the 360 stage that the ringleader show is performed in, the park has really worked out what works and what doesn’t.
Introducing The Flossers, a sweet like candy girl band who just want to rock! Singing to their loyal fans throughout the day Cookie, Candy and Cupcake know how to put on a show. Performing two different sets throughout the day and including songs like Sweet Like Candy and California Girls, the park really thought about what songs would work with the theme of candy floss. Be sure to snap a selfie before they become too famous! Again we absolutely loved The Flossers show, the way they use the 360 stage is a lot of fun. No matter where you sit you're always going to get a good view!
Located around the Carnival area are a few pop-up stands, a magic show and a fortune teller who can look into your future and give you warnings about who you might encounter during your visit. However, be warned you might see something you can't unsee like a card with Bozo on it. We also hear that "The Eye" is always watching you. We really like how the park has managed to design cards around events around the park during the year and some of the acts like The Flossers also have their own themed card. Over at the magic show, be amazed as the highly skilled magician can read your card, put a sword through someone's neck and make three bits of rope magically turn into one! Of course, all of this pop-up entertainment is completely free and included in your ticket price.
Although they don’t make a sound, you can’t miss the mimes - they are everywhere! Filled with talented dance moves, driving a pretend car and some classic miming, the mimes are a key part of the carnival. Make sure you get them to film a Tiktok for you.
Another great character on the line up is the Balloon Master, creating fabulous balloon art for you to keep and take around the park - he’s also a pretty good rapper too.
The whole event is filled with such wonderful entertainment and the staff are fantastic. Really taking on their roles and will get you involved however shy you are, getting you into the Carnival spirit.
No event is complete without special merchandise and its own themed Coke Freestyle cup! Carnival sees Thorpe Park team up with Rob Yeo with a special bit of artwork made around Stealth in the Amity area, this artwork can be found on a pin badge, magnet and T-shirt of course! Other smaller bits include a lanyard and a carnival pin badge. The themed Coke Freestyle bottles are a really nice touch and make a cool souvenir.
Trailers has been taken over by the bunch of superfans of Bozo and clowns have been spotted in previous films! New for 2022 "Back 2 Play" premiers in the super spark cinema, however this time the portals go both ways, meaning nowhere is safe. Trailers: Breakout at Bozo's has reopened in a new summer format, with the age range for the maze lowed to 8+ instead of the Fright Nights recommended 12+ with this lower age it does mean jump scares won't be such a big thing. However dont let this fool you, we still got plenty of jump scares during our visit to the cinema. Obviously the actors will read the room, see the age ranges and change how scary there are. We absolutely love that the park has reopened a Fright Nights maze for summer, and the fact that it's half the price of a Halloween run-through is great. However, we feel like for the first half an hour of the day the maze should be free to attract a queue and get people talking about it. We loved having a clown takeover of the maze, it was a great overlay and we can't wait to see what the park does next with this maze! Little changes were made in terms of theming inside the maze, some new carnival flags were installed in some scenes and new projections were added in the portal scenes.
Home to the outcasts of carnival The Junkyard is full of entertainment such as Rusty the clown and some old theming from Big Top! Some people might remember Carlos the clown being the front of the big top maze, the park has repainted him and used him as a great photo opportunity in front of the spray paint wall. Roaming entertainment can be found around the area at certain points during the day, show times can be found in Thorpe Park App. The Junkyard is also home to lots of street food and a pop-up bar.
Performing at The Junkyard and on the Carnival stage are some fantastic acts such as fire acts, chair balancing acts and hula-hoop artists that can spin 20+ hoops at once. It's great to see such a wide range of talent performing at Carnival!
To get you in the Carnival mood, new music can be heard around the park from the second you walk into the entrance gate. We love the new music and the mash-up of the Big Top soundtrack is a great addition. Of course, there are also lots of new theming around the carnival areas. Our personal highlight has to be Mr and Mrs Flüb lining the entrance archway, blowing around in the wind all day is a hard job! The 360 stage makes great use of the space and we would love to see it used again for other shows, maybe even a Fright Nights show. As we expected the Mardi Gras parade float has been rethemed and turned into a roaming Carnival float.
Carnival is a fantastic event with lots going on around the park there's always something going on. You could easily sit in the Carnival area all afternoon and something would be going on around you. Top tip, dont leave your phone unlocked around the mimes, they might not be able to speak but they will definitely take a few selfies on your phone.
Go visit the Carnival this summer at Thorpe Park Resort, you won't regret it! Carnival runs from 22nd July - 29th August 2022.