Freestyle begins foreclosure proceedings

Horry County, SC - HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - Foreclosure proceedings recently filed against Freestyle Music Park could be signaling the end of a joyride for the multi-million dollar theme park.

FPI US, LLC, filed the foreclosure proceedings against FPI MB Entertainment, LLC, on Aug. 9 in the Horry County Court of Common Pleas.

According to court documents, FPI US distributed more than $30.8 million in loan agreements to FPI Entertainment between Feb. 27, 2009 and Aug. 25, 2009. Throughout the duration of ownership, FPI US alleges that FPI Entertainment has failed to make appropriate mortgage payments back to the company.

Due to the lack of payment, FPI US has requested through court documents that Freestyle Music Park be foreclosed on. Property included in the foreclosure proceedings include all "materials, supplies, rides, apparatus and other items of personal property now owned or hereafter acquired by FPI [Entertainment]."

The threat of foreclosure comes as more bad news for the embattled theme park that has seen its fair share of financial troubles since its original development in 2008.

Formerly operated as Hard Rock Park, FPI Entertainment acquired the $400 million theme park under bankruptcy for $25 million in February 2009. In addition to the park, FPI Entertainment inherited $569,000 in outstanding debt.

FPI Entertainment investors responsible for the purchase of the park included Roundbox Advisors; Freestyle Park International; Baker Leisure Group; Thomas M. Hiles, of Wilmington, NC; and D. Tim Duncan, of Myrtle Beach. Both Hiles and Duncan, according to a purchase announcement, were founding members of Hard Rock Park.

FPI said it would revamp existing rides, add new attractions and redesign the look of Hard Rock Park before its opening, making sure the park was a "long term success."

With just one season of operation under its belt in 2009, Freestyle Music came under financial fire after it was unable to meet lease payment deadlines, as outlined in contracts with a variety of businesses. FPI Entertainment was slapped with more than 17 lawsuits from companies including BMW, Duplicates INK and VenCore Solutions, LLC.

Officials with Freestyle Music Park later announced in early 2010 the park would be shutting down its business offices and laying off a limited staff used to maintain the park in the offseason.

Citing a lack of funding, speculation began to brew into the extent of the park's true financial problems.

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