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Subject: All The Shireland Info You Need

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Date Posted: 11:18:19 01/20/04 Tue

Thanks to Jamey for doing in a nite what I have been trying to do for 2 years!! A simple newspaper search at the local library turned up the following information:

1) Shireland opened on May 28, 1988. The park is (was?) 111 acres, included a 68,000 square foot circus tent and four 10,000 square foot exhibit tents. Smrt maintained that Shireland was a "completely original family adventure that will include a zoo, a circus and a county fair all wrapped into one". Smrt said that Shireland never attempted to compete with Great America, with its "high speed, gravity-defying rides". Instead, it was supposed to deliver a message of good conquering evil. He is quoted as saying "Some children today aren't allowed to enjoy their childhood without violence, drugs and other 'dragons' infringing on their dreams". With its musical show "Of Dragons and Dreams", Shireland attempted to deliver a positive message to kids.

2) His desire to make the world a more "child-user-friendly" place was not enough to keep the doors open. Shireland did close at the end of the 1988 season and stayed that closed for two years. In 1991, the park opened again. The articles didn't say if they were able to sustain enough business to weather out the entire 1991 season, but seems to have been closed ever since.

3) While Smrt may have been a proponent on "family values", he must not have felt that "family values" started at home. If they did, they certainly didn't start in the work place! On February 6, 1991, Thomas Smrt "...turned himself into the Cary police on a McHenry warrant for simple assault and battery". The law maintains that simple assault is verbal threats. Battery is the physical carrying out of those threats. Aggravated battery is carrying out the threats with a weapon.

4) On September 18, he was, once again, charged with battery, for threatening and screaming at an employee. Smrt was found not guilty, since these types of arguments were not uncommon with this employee. The "battery" part consisted of him yanking a time card out of the employee's hand. His lawyer argued that the time card was the property of Smrt and he had a right to retrieve it. The judge scolded Smrt for his behavior, and called him "ungentlemanly" but stated that his actions were not illegal. As of September of 2003, charges were still pending on the other "simple assault and battery" charges, which were brought forth by another previous employee, although no details were available.

Thanks Jamey!!!

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Subject Author Date
Re: All The Shireland Info You NeedChuck11:20:23 01/20/04 Tue
Re: All The Shireland Info You NeedDiana Madama22:59:41 12/06/04 Mon

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