Russia Is Building a Pro-Russia Theme Park in Crimea

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The battlefields of eastern Ukraine haven’t stopped smoking yet, but Russia is moving ahead with its attempt to buy Crimea’s love with its plans for a massive, patriotic park.

A website devoted to the project explains that the idea for the park “is based on familiarization with the history of the Crimean Peninsula as an integral part of Russia.” The park will have sections showcasing different eras of Crimea, including the historical past, the present, and its promising future. (There’ll probably be a 23-year gap starting at around 1991 and ending this summer, but don’t mind that!)

The plan also cites the local economic development minister saying that this is the type of park Crimeans have been dreaming about for a long time. And the plan reportedly has the support and approval of ex-president and current prime minister of Russia Dmitry Medvedev. 

But it’s not just a big deal for Crimea. The proposed park is set to be the biggest of its kind in all of Russia — a total of about 100 acres. Attractions will include a climbing wall, laser games, and many performance venues.

Nothing emphasizes ownership of a contested region more than investing millions of dollars into its development. Well played.

Of course, this being Russia, it’s deploying its usual method of citizen engagement: voting on a name for the park. The front-runners so far are disappointingly unimaginative. The top three so far are Yes! Park!, Megapolis, and the Lost Chronicles of Time.