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Les Epesses, Vendée, France
Le Puy du Fou (from the name of the place which translates as "the hill of the beech", from puy and fagus) is a historical theme park in Les Epesses (between Cholet and La Roche-sur-Yon) in the heart of the Vendée region of Western France. The park brings in some 1.5 million visitors every year, making it the second most popular attraction in France after Disneyland Paris. The history of the Puy du Fou as a theme park started in 1977 when Phillippe de Villiers, a twenty-seven-year-old student (now a French politician) decided to create an original show named the Cinéscénie which means "the stage in moving".
When he discovered on the 13th of June 1977 the ruins of an old renaissance castle in the village of Les Epesses near Cholet, he wrote a good scenario very quickly about a local family named Maupillier (the real name of a soldier of Vendee at the time of the conflict between Vendee and French Republic during the French Revolution), spanning from the fourteenth century until World War II. Phillippe de Villiers organised an association of 600 members (more than 3000 today) named "l'Association du Puy du Fou" which has as president today Phillippe de Villiers' son, Nicolas de Villiers.