The sign welcoming guests to Heritage USA. The Heritage Grand Hotel and Partner Center have been purchased by Morningstar Ministries, perhaps giving the defunct park a chance of revival.
File photo of a Heritage tour bus when the park was still open. Heritage USA was run by the Praise the Lord (PTL) Ministry created by televangelists Jim and Tammy Bakker.
The Heritage complex lit up at night during its years of operation. Heritage USA attracted over 6 million visitors and was behind only Walt Disney World and Disneyland in terms of visitors during the 80s.
An abandoned 500 room hotel that was never completed. Despite its popularity, the park fell under hard financial times, particularly when Jim Bakker was found guilty of fraud and served time in federal prison.
A sketch of how the hotel was planned to look. Since leaving prison, Jim Bakker has returned to hosting a television program and has written many books, including I Was Wrong which detailed his rise and fall, as well as his life during incarceration.
Another shot of the hotel before renovations. It is now owned by Morningstar Ministries and has recently been opened as a hotel and a church.
What the shops on 'America's Main Street' used to look like. It included clothing shops, a 'Bakkery', restaurants, arcades, and other attractions.
Another modern shot of the shops.
"The King's Castle" can be seen behind a bridge that the train would use to cross the lake. The centerpiece has been slated for demolition by Morningstar Ministries.
A close up of "The King's Castle" which is soon slated for demolition. A moratorium is currently in place on the demolition because a permit for the grounds has not been confirmed.
Before closing down, "King's Castle" was turned into a giant arcade and go-cart track.
The interior of "King's Castle." Nearby residents voiced approval for demolition of the castle, calling it an 'eyesore.'
Second floor interior. Tracy Horton of Morningstar Ministries told reporters "It was going to be too expensive to do anything with it...we are now asking the public to give us ideas."
The Heritage USA mission statement inside "The King's Castle." Morningstar Ministries, founded in 1995, lists as its mission: "Our services are devoted to sound biblical teaching, personal ministry, and a contemporary style of worship."
This 'barn' building was where religious services were held in the park. In the back was the Praise the Lord (PTL) Studios.
The same building today.
Light spills in through holes in the roof.
View from the front stage. The building would hold crowds of up to 3,000 people at a time.
File photo of the water park. After the closure of Heritage USA, the water park continued to operate for a few years under the name "Carolina Splash Water Park."
A shot of the water park today.
The mountain and large water slide can be seen here.
The bridge leading to the water park.
A tunnel that a tour train would go through.
Green water surrounding the mountain.
Entrance to the water park from the Heritage Grand Hotel.
An overview of the water park.
Turnstiles at the entrance of the water park.
An alligator statue in the children's area.
The pool under the cliff jumps, littered with outdoor chairs and lounge chairs.
A flooded stairway that used to lead to the observation area under the pool.
Speed slides in the water park.
Under the rock and into the pool.
An overview of the island.
Entrance to water park offices.
An old Wendy's restaurant.
A shot of the children's area.
An overview of the children's area.
A sign left over from when the park was named "Carolina Splash Water Park."
File photo of the train and a train station named "Buffalo Depot."
Buffalo Depot today.
Buffalo Depot with the King's Castle looming in the background.
File photo of "The Heritage Inn."
The Inn today.
File photo of an outdoor stage area by the water.
The same spot today.
Another photo of the shops with the hotel looming in the background.
'The King's Castle', Jim Bakker's iconic landmark of his renowned Christian theme park Heritage USA, is slated to be torn down. Nearby residents approve of the decision, seeing the crumbling tower as an eye sore. The now-defunct Heritage was at one point nearly as popular as Disney World. Heritage USA pictures courtesy of Horse Creek Productions.