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Author Topic: Defunct Amusment Parks  (Read 1534 times)

roadman65

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Defunct Amusment Parks
« on: October 31, 2018, 02:37:44 PM »

I grew up in New Jersey and heard a lot of talk from my parents about places that once were popular amusement parks that were closed before or after I was born.

As a child I remember Palisades Park (not the borough, but a former amusement park where Winston Towers now sits in Fort Lee) and the very park Chuck Barris wrote about in a 1962 song by Danny Cannon.  That closed in 1971.

Then there is Olympic Park (Irivington/ Maplewood) that ran from 1887 to 1965.
Freedom Land USA (Bronx, NYC) that ran from 1960 to 1964.
Betrand Island in Lake Hopatcong that is now closed but ran even up till the 1980's.
Astroland in Coney Island was but I think was redeveloped by a new owner.
Asbury Park Boardwalk is gone.
Boardwalk and Baseball (Davenport, FL) which is now a shopping center.   Closed in 1989 as Anheiser Busch (owner of the establishment) thought it was a flop.

Any others that you heard of or missed?  Or any you want to talk about.
« Last Edit: October 31, 2018, 02:39:49 PM by roadman65 »
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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #1 on: October 31, 2018, 02:49:37 PM »

Thumb Fun park in Fish Creek (Door County) WI, 1962-1998, turned into condos.
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Brandon

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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #2 on: October 31, 2018, 03:02:21 PM »

A short list and some links:

Riverview Park, Chicago, closed 1967.
Kiddieland, Melrose Park, IL, closed 2009.
Sea World Ohio, Aurora, OH, closed 2000.
Old Chicago, Bolingbrook, IL, closed 1980.
Boblo Island, Amherstburg, ON, closed 1993.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_defunct_amusement_parks
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abefroman329

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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #3 on: October 31, 2018, 03:16:25 PM »

A short list and some links:

Riverview Park, Chicago, closed 1967.
Kiddieland, Melrose Park, IL, closed 2009.
Sea World Ohio, Aurora, OH, closed 2000.
Old Chicago, Bolingbrook, IL, closed 1980.
Boblo Island, Amherstburg, ON, closed 1993.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_defunct_amusement_parks
Kiddieland was a dump when I was a kid, I'm sure it was downright decrepit by 2009.

I still don't understand why Old Chicago failed when other, similar concepts, such as Mall of America and the West Edmonton Mall, have thrived.
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Brandon

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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #4 on: October 31, 2018, 03:24:28 PM »

A short list and some links:

Riverview Park, Chicago, closed 1967.
Kiddieland, Melrose Park, IL, closed 2009.
Sea World Ohio, Aurora, OH, closed 2000.
Old Chicago, Bolingbrook, IL, closed 1980.
Boblo Island, Amherstburg, ON, closed 1993.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_defunct_amusement_parks
Kiddieland was a dump when I was a kid, I'm sure it was downright decrepit by 2009.

I still don't understand why Old Chicago failed when other, similar concepts, such as Mall of America and the West Edmonton Mall, have thrived.

Execution, lack of anchor stores, and last, but not least, competition from Marriott's Great America (now Six Flags Great America) opened the exact same year.
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cl94

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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #5 on: October 31, 2018, 03:27:01 PM »

Geauga Lake in Northeast Ohio is the first one that comes to mind for me.
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kphoger

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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #6 on: October 31, 2018, 03:42:18 PM »

In Wichita, Joyland is the one everyone talks about.
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frankenroad

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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #7 on: October 31, 2018, 03:55:22 PM »

A couple that I went to as a kid.

LeSourdsville Lake (later called Americana) near Monroe, OH.   Closed in the 1990s.  I took my kids there once probably around 1992.

PeeWee Valley  - which was a mini-amusement park on the border of Evendale and Reading, OH.  I went to many birthday parties there in the 1960s.  I think it closed by 1970.

There was one called Fantasy Farm that I think was next to LeSourdsville Lake, but I don't think I ever went there.
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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #8 on: October 31, 2018, 05:10:29 PM »

Six Flags Worlds of Adventure:  the combined properties of Sea World of Ohio and Six Flags of Ohio
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US 81

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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #9 on: October 31, 2018, 05:21:34 PM »

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Six_Flags_AstroWorld

I have fond memories of my visit here in the 1970's....
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abefroman329

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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #10 on: October 31, 2018, 06:07:27 PM »

A short list and some links:

Riverview Park, Chicago, closed 1967.
Kiddieland, Melrose Park, IL, closed 2009.
Sea World Ohio, Aurora, OH, closed 2000.
Old Chicago, Bolingbrook, IL, closed 1980.
Boblo Island, Amherstburg, ON, closed 1993.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_defunct_amusement_parks
Kiddieland was a dump when I was a kid, I'm sure it was downright decrepit by 2009.

I still don't understand why Old Chicago failed when other, similar concepts, such as Mall of America and the West Edmonton Mall, have thrived.

Execution, lack of anchor stores, and last, but not least, competition from Marriott's Great America (now Six Flags Great America) opened the exact same year.
How could Great America have been competition? It’s an outdoor park. Old Chicago was an indoor park. It’s Chicago.
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txstateends

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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #11 on: October 31, 2018, 07:17:45 PM »

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Six_Flags_AstroWorld

I have fond memories of my visit here in the 1970's....

Still weird that Astroworld is gone.  There is one in the Dallas area that just announced its closure.  Sandy Lake Amusement Park (http://www.sandylake.com/), in Carrollton, was a small-format park that was a fixture just off I-35E for 48 years.  A big part of their business was school field trips, including band and choir groups.  I happened to be in one of the band groups in the late 1970s that made a trip up to Sandy Lake.  I found out quickly that the tilt-a-whirl would have to go on my never-again amusement rides list.

https://www.dallasobserver.com/arts/sandy-lake-amusement-park-announces-it-is-closing-11286229
The owners sold it to a neighboring landscaping business.
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1995hoo

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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #12 on: October 31, 2018, 07:43:50 PM »

Never went there: Rockaway Playland in New York. It was near the Cross Bay Bridge off Beach 98 Street.

I believe Nellie Bly off the Belt Parkway in Brooklyn has been redeveloped into something I wouldn’t call an amusement park but rather a “family fun center” or similar. I remember going there once or twice when it was Nellie Bly when I was a little kid, but I don’t remember much about it other than that it was a small-scale amusement park. The rides were smaller and probably better for kids.

My cousins, who lived on Staten Island when we were kids, liked Action Park in New Jersey. I never got to go there either.

My parents still talk about Steeplechase Park at Coney Island.
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Hot Rod Hootenanny

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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #13 on: October 31, 2018, 10:18:35 PM »

There are at least 10 abandoned Amusement Park sites in Ohio.
LeSourdsville Lake Amusement Park (Middletown, Oh)
Chippewa Lake Park (Medina Co)
Euclid Beach Park (East Cleveland suburb)
Geauga Lake (East Cleveland exurb)
Idora Park (Youngstown)
Indianola Park (Columbus, between OSU & The State Fairgrounds)
Luna Park, (Cleveland, between Hungarian Village & Shaker Heights)
Olentangy Park (Columbus-Clintonville)
Puritas Springs Park (Cleveland, West Park)
SeaWorld Ohio (East Cleveland exurb)
Shady Lake Park (Streetsboro)
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HazMatt

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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #14 on: October 31, 2018, 10:28:30 PM »

Couple in NC/SC
Ghost Town in Maggie Valley closed in 2002.  Supposedly it will reopen next year, but there have been a few failed reopenings in the years since it first closed.
Myrtle Beach Pavilion closed in 2006.
Land of Oz at Beech Mountain closed in the 80s I think.
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Kniwt

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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #15 on: November 01, 2018, 12:56:30 AM »

One with some roadgeek value is Rock-A-Hoola (1962-1990, 1998-2004), now a graffiti-covered landmark along I-15 east of Barstow. Boatload of pics at the link.
https://www.atlasobscura.com/places/rock-a-hoola-waterpark-2

Quote
Since closing, the faux-50s architecture and waterslides have faded and broken under the unrelenting Mojave sun. vandals and scavengers have damaged most of the buildings and signs, but they still stand, rusting away like some time lost ruin. Visitors and passersby could be forgiven for asking who thought it would be a good idea to put a water park in the desert in the first place.

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MikieTimT

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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #16 on: November 01, 2018, 02:38:59 AM »

Dogpatch USA at Marble Falls, AR.  Vaguely remember visiting as a child, but it's been closed down for a while, though it seems to continually change hands with grand plans to open back up, only to dramatically fail before anything of substance comes to fruition.
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jp the roadgeek

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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #17 on: November 01, 2018, 04:15:46 AM »

Gaslight Village in Lake George, NY
Rocky Point in Warwick, RI
Mountain Park in Holyoke, MA
Savin Rock Amusement Park in West Haven, CT
Frontier Town in Schroon Lake, NY
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MikeSantNY78

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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #18 on: November 01, 2018, 04:44:47 AM »

The reason WNY kids (and their parents) went across to Canada every summer with their report cards: Crystal Beach...
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RoadWarrior56

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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #19 on: November 01, 2018, 06:25:25 AM »

Two dead amusement parks that I remember:

Fountaine Ferry park in Louisville KY along the Ohio River - I remember that one well from my childhood.  I think it closed by the early 70's.

Old Indiana - NW of Indianapolis near I-65.  That park came and went so fast that I never got to it.  I think it was in the late 80's.  I believe there was even a scandal that involved it, but not 100% sure about that.
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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #20 on: November 01, 2018, 10:52:00 AM »

Never went there: Rockaway Playland in New York. It was near the Cross Bay Bridge off Beach 98 Street.

I believe Nellie Bly off the Belt Parkway in Brooklyn has been redeveloped into something I wouldn’t call an amusement park but rather a “family fun center” or similar. I remember going there once or twice when it was Nellie Bly when I was a little kid, but I don’t remember much about it other than that it was a small-scale amusement park. The rides were smaller and probably better for kids.

My cousins, who lived on Staten Island when we were kids, liked Action Park in New Jersey. I never got to go there either.

My parents still talk about Steeplechase Park at Coney Island.

There's no way on earth my mother would have allowed us to go to "Traction Park".  That looked like an emergency room trip waiting to happen.
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Brandon

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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #21 on: November 01, 2018, 10:54:20 AM »

How could Great America have been competition? It’s an outdoor park. Old Chicago was an indoor park. It’s Chicago.

Great America was and is much, much bigger, has bigger and better rides, the capacity for more and bigger rides, and is between Chicago and Milwaukee (why Marriott chose the location in the first place).  And, although seasonal, I've always gotten the feeling that Great America was far better run than Old Chicago, and therefore could draw far more customers.
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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #22 on: November 01, 2018, 11:29:44 AM »

Paragon Park along Nantasket Beach in Hull, MA: closed circa 1984
Pleasure Island in Wakefield, MA: closed circa 1969
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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #23 on: November 01, 2018, 05:27:57 PM »

Hard Rock/Freestyle Music Park in Myrtle Beach, SC only lasted two seasons. Poor location (Myrtle Beach is a tourism destination in relative decline) and poor management hurt it. Six Flags lost two parks due to Hurricane Katrina (New Orleans directly and Astroworld indirectly [Astroworld's closure announcement came not long after Katrina hit New Orleans]).
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Re: Defunct Amusment Parks
« Reply #24 on: November 01, 2018, 05:31:47 PM »

Here are a couple in the Finger Lakes region of NY
Roseland Park in Canandaigua. Its antique carousel was moved to Carousel Center Mall (now Destiny USA) in Syracuse. Not sure if it's still in that mall. Roseland closed in 1982 I believe and the waterfront was redeveloped for expensive condos.

Long Point Park which was on the west shore of Conesus Lake. This is still a public park but the rides were removed back in the 90's
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