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Old 05-24-2009, 08:15 AM
 
Location: Cambridge, MA
3,970 posts, read 6,164,096 times
Reputation: 4531
Default Amusement (not "Theme") Park Memories

Whenever "the official start of summer" rolls around, I get all nostalgic n' stuff for Coney Island. As a P & G brat, I scored a free trip there on "Dividend Day" if at no other time during a given season. The crazy traffic tie-ups on Kellogg Ave were soon forgotten when Sunlite Pool and the tops of the Log Flume and Shooting Star were in sight. After the inevitable ooh'ing and aah'ing over the big wooden depth gauge which had markings for how high the river had crested during each flood - with the notation for 1937 waaaaaaay over everybody's heads - we were off and running.
There are lotsa specific things about Coney Island that I could expound upon, but I'm going to hold off for a change.
I want this thread to be not only about Coney, but also about all the other - smaller - amusement parks around Greater Cincinnati which were eventually killed off by that "Paramount" sprawl on I-71. My recollections of Peewee Valley in Reading are barely there, and for whatever reason I never got to Fantasy Farm or its neighboring and "better" LeSourdsville Lake (known in later years as Americana.) Everybody chime in - bonus points for anyone whose grandparents visited Chester Park.
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Old 05-24-2009, 09:36 AM
 
1,795 posts, read 1,348,834 times
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The shooting star was the first, and IMHO, best roller coaster I ever rode. Remember standing at the top (bad idea, but who knew?) The wild mouse was a real kidney breaker Great bands at Moonlight Gardens (when we couldn't afford the dance, we would sit outside and listen. I still have a stack of winning SkiBall coupons around here somewhere.

Coney Island had it all. Swimming. The Flying Wallandas wire walking over our heads. Great Rossi's fireworks. We were there for the final massive firework's display. Cardboard and sparks were raining down on us. We loved it.

Our senior prom after prom event was at LeSourdsville Lake. Great small little park. It's a shame it went bye bye

Pee Wee Valley on Reading road in (near?) Evandale. Small children's park that our parents took us to every year.

Last edited by mike1003; 05-24-2009 at 09:56 AM..
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Old 05-24-2009, 05:36 PM
 
12 posts, read 25,628 times
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I loved Coney Island. The tunnel of love with those old wooden boats. I don't even remember them having straps, lol. Just holding on to the bar on the seat in front of you as you went down the fall. The the train that took you around the lake. Once you entered the woods there real people playing the roles of cowboys and Indian's. I can remember our moms taking a seat at the beer garden, with thier beer. As long as we came back and checked in with them all was well.

At the pool I remember the sports play area. They had a motto painted on the wall that said; You don't stop playing because you grow old. You grow old because you stopped playing. I should have lived by those words. The highpoint of the summer was getting our season passes to the pool.

Fantasy Island was fun. Although I remember being very scared of Tom Sawyers cave.
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Old 05-24-2009, 05:45 PM
 
1,795 posts, read 1,348,834 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BiloxiBelle View Post

Fantasy Island was fun. Although I remember being very scared of Tom Sawyers cave.
Where was Fantasy Island, I don't remember it
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Old 05-24-2009, 05:56 PM
 
12 posts, read 25,628 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mike1003 View Post
Where was Fantasy Island, I don't remember it

LOL, you're right I would have had to board a small sea plane to visit Fantasy Island. Fantasy Farm is what I meant.
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Old 05-24-2009, 07:03 PM
 
Location: Deer Park, OH
246 posts, read 598,365 times
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Default Fantasy Farm

Fans of Fantasy Farm will want to visit this website:

The Defunct Fantasy Farm Amusement Park Website Memorial

In addition to lots of cool pix and facts about the park, there are links to a couple dozen home movies taken at the park. Fun to watch!
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Old 05-26-2009, 12:25 AM
 
9,281 posts, read 11,130,268 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goyguy View Post
Whenever "the official start of summer" rolls around, I get all nostalgic n' stuff for Coney Island. As a P & G brat, I scored a free trip there on "Dividend Day" if at no other time during a given season. The crazy traffic tie-ups on Kellogg Ave were soon forgotten when Sunlite Pool and the tops of the Log Flume and Shooting Star were in sight. After the inevitable ooh'ing and aah'ing over the big wooden depth gauge which had markings for how high the river had crested during each flood - with the notation for 1937 waaaaaaay over everybody's heads - we were off and running.
There are lotsa specific things about Coney Island that I could expound upon, but I'm going to hold off for a change.
I want this thread to be not only about Coney, but also about all the other - smaller - amusement parks around Greater Cincinnati which were eventually killed off by that "Paramount" sprawl on I-71..
Two things:

1) Coney Island was replaced, "not killed off" by Kings Island. Since the entire park was on the flood plain, Taft Broadcasting wanted to relocate the place so that they could have a full season each year.

2) As for P&G Dividend Days, most families arrived at the place very early as there were a number of great games that would allow you to "win" a ton of P&G products. We rarely left without a year's supply of Crest and Gleam, Prell and a couple of cans of Crisco. That went away when they moved it to Kings Island.
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Old 05-26-2009, 07:49 AM
 
Location: Far from where I'd like to be
25,137 posts, read 30,803,918 times
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Never did get into Kings Island, preferring older parks like Americana and Geauga Lake in Aurora (RIP to both of those!).

Kings Island seemed too "new" to me -- and I didn't move to town until 1983. The only thing good about it was the fabulous media preview parties the park used to throw for the local press before the start of the season, and at Winterfest. Free food and beer, free souvenirs, free rides. I still have the 15th anniversary coffee mug, and the beach towel from when the water park opened.

It was good, though, to watch Coney reinvent itself. My friend's two daughters both landed jobs this summer as part of the show troupe at Coney. It's the perfect place to take little kids who would be overwhelmed (and made cranky!!) by Kings Island.
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Old 06-06-2009, 06:08 PM
 
257 posts, read 876,862 times
Reputation: 98
Default A couple more

Peewee Valley was a favorite location for birthday parties when
we were little. All I can remember of the rides any more were a
merry-go-round and maybe a sort of miniature roller-coaster.
There was a snack area with enough picnic benches to host
a moderate-sized party. The concession stand supplied bottles
of Coke and straws, but you brought your own birthday cake.
I also seem to remember that the stand featured hot dogs
cooked on those metal skewers.

Here are a couple more that have not been mentioned so far:


GE Park:

This was a sort of amusement park for GE employees and their
guests. I think it was out route 747, beyond TriCounty and 275.
They showed outdoor movies on summer nights. I don't
remember whether they had motorized rides, or whether there
was just a lot of playground equipment and the like. More die-hard
GE people will probably have plenty to add.

Kissel Brothers' Amusement Park:

I remember going here in the summer of 1962. It was probably
in the northwest part of town, maybe near Groesbeck - this was
long before Northgate came about. It was kind of a plain, open
area with a lot of mechanized rides. Kissel Brothers were well
known for running the school buses around town, but they also
operated rides for small fairs, such as Wyoming's "May Fete".
I guess this "amusement park" was where the rides sat in-between
gigs.
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Old 06-07-2009, 12:59 PM
 
4,094 posts, read 4,527,789 times
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As a kid, our favorite amusement park was Coney Island. Never used the pool that I can recall, but we sure had fun on the rides.

Lesourdsville Lake Amusement Park was another fun spot for us. We'd spend some time swimming in the lake. There were some ropes or cables with rings attached that you could swing out on to dive into the lake.

The Cincinnati Zoo had a small area with amusement rides. One of the rides was a dark ride called "Laugh in the Dark". It was the same idea as "Fun in the Dark" at Coney Island.

There were a couple of other small amusement parks in Cincinnati, one not far from Coney Island. The other was next to a shopping center somewhere in the northern part of greater Cincy that looked like the kind of rides you'd see at fairs and carnivals. I'm kinda wondering if it might have been Kissel Bros. Amusement Park. I don't think I ever know the name of it though.

Another fun spot was a medium-sized place called Riverside Amusement Park in Louisville Kentucky. As I recall, it was fairly close to the horse race track.
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