Miracle Strip Amusement Park opened in 1963 with the Starliner Roller Coaster as it’s main attraction. Located across from the beach in Panama City, the park did not look like your average theme park and resembled the traditional seaside boardwalks of the past. The park featured many of the typical rides you would find at any carnival nowadays including scramblers, bumper cars, a carousel and a haunted house. Some of the rides, such as the Abominable Snowman and Dante’s Inferno, were enhanced by placing them in dome structures and adding lighting effects, temperature changes, smoke effects and music.

In 2003, it was announced that the park would close the following year due to lack of interest, loss of money and increased expenses to keep the rides maintained and running. Many of the rides were either sold off or disappeared, some being found and reopened under the same name. Any of the remaining structures or rides that weren’t sold were later demolished.

In 2008, Pier Park opened down the street where Miracle Strip once stood, an open-air dining, entertainment and shopping mall. Teddy Meeks, a wholesale jeweler, sought to put a carousel in Pier Park. After much searching, in 2009, he found not only a carousel, but the original carousel from Miracle Strip which has been sitting in storage on the old Miracle Strip property since 2004.

After a year in operation and officially named “Miracle Strip“, Pier Park approached Meeks with the idea of adding a ferris wheel. He looked for the park’s original ferris wheel which he found out was moved to Chattanooga, Tennessee and was also not for sale. Deciding on the next best thing, Meeks found an exact make and model of the ride in California. Soon after, the last two remaining rides from the Miracle Strip property, a 1985 Zamperalla Balloon Race and a 1952 Allen Herschell Red Baron plane ride, were bought and added to Pier Park.

In October 2010, news outlets reported that Teddy and Jenny Meeks along with two other partners had bought the Starliner roller coaster for $2 million and has started efforts to rebuild it. More recent sources though have reported that the Starliner sits in storage in Palmetto, FL and is still up for sale as of September 2012. The current owner, Ridewerks, have considered donating the Starliner train to the National Roller Coaster Museum but also said that another possible option was that Pier Park was still interested in maybe one day rebuilding the coaster.


  1. The Meeks bought and it will Reopen at Pier Park in 2015!

  2. I have very fond memories of going to PCB and visiting the Miracle Strip Amusement Park. I was able to take my children once when they were little to ride all the wonderful rides that I enjoyed myself all those years growing up. I was very upset when my parents returned from a trip and told me the park had closed. It has been horrible to pass that spot and see the deserted park. I am very glad some of the rides have been preserved and reopened by the Meeks! I am extremely excited to hear about the Starliner Coaster coming back! I will definitely be visiting them at Pier Park.

  3. I rode the Starliner when it was part of Cypress Gardens Adventure Park. I hope it finds it’s way back home!

  4. Does anyone know what the current status is of this location? I’m going to be in the area this summer and I’ve been wanting to check this place out.

  5. has it been demolished???

  6. It isn’t demolished! It’s in operation. Here’s a link to their website:


  7. The original location of miracle strip was across the road from shipwreck island water park. That location was where all the abandoned stuff was. It has been flattened, and there is nothing left except a parking lot, and some overgrown brush.

    • As a local to Panama city, I was outraged when I heard they we’re closing the park…..it’s all us locals had….I use to go every summer, seeing the pictures from where it was demolished make me mad and sick to my stomach….seeing all the graffiti on the snowman⛄ and the inferno?,Smh,? such disrespect for such great memories shared there with friends and family.They may have brought some of the rides back to pier park, but it will never be the original miracle strip.?

  8. Best park of growing up in PCB, working at Eds beach service in the day, and running rides at night. No a bad summer for being 14.
    At 13 I was one of the two characture artists.
    I also worked Pettibone junction. Sad to see it all gone now, replaced with Pier Park. What a trap.