Jump to content

Did the Paddle Boats operate in the 1970's?


Recommended Posts

The Paddle Boats dock has been at the park since 1974. The '74 map and various photos confirm its presence, however it is unknown when the boat attraction actually opened. I have not seen any photos or evidence that the boats were ever installed or operated prior to 1983, and can confirm that they were not open from 1980 to 1982. So, did the boats ever operate from 1974 to 1979?

 

1974 Park Map shows the "Boats" and dock:

gallery_2_579_963801.jpg

 

1983 Park Map includes the "Paddle Boats" and they did open that year:

gallery_2_579_335188.jpg

 

The dock (shown here in 1989) has been at the park since 1974:

gallery_2_579_735152.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites

I recall the docks always being there. You could get down there via pathways from the restaurant. In the times I went there in the early days, I don't recall ever seeing the paddle boats out there. It could also be entirely possible that they were not operating the days I was there. Are the docks still there?

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 months later...

My sister worked opening 1974 and was assigned to the “Boats”. She spend the year as a breaker since the boats never opened. The story we were always told was when the park brought the land from Switlik, he claimed he never sold them the lake. So the boats and all the vegetation from Bandstand to the Aqua Stadium were left untouched, hiding the lake. Once G.A. won the lawsuit, approximately 1983, they took over the lake, cleared the brush, built Great Lake Grandstand, and finally put in the boats. The original boats were electric and stored at Camp Wanda for years and deteriorated. New two person paddle boats were used along with the original dock. A buoy-fence was strung along the flume supports on the left so people could not paddle out into the full lake. I believe the boats did cost extra.

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

My sister worked opening 1974 and was assigned to the “Boats”. She spend the year as a breaker since the boats never opened. The story we were always told was when the park brought the land from Switlik, he claimed he never sold them the lake. So the boats and all the vegetation from Bandstand to the Aqua Stadium were left untouched, hiding the lake. Once G.A. won the lawsuit, approximately 1983, they took over the lake, cleared the brush, built Great Lake Grandstand, and finally put in the boats. The original boats were electric and stored at Camp Wanda for years and deteriorated. New two person paddle boats were used along with the original dock. A buoy-fence was strung along the flume supports on the left so people could not paddle out into the full lake. I believe the boats did cost extra.

 

That is great information! Now we know to keep our eyes open for a photo of those original boats while they were in storage!

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 11 months later...

My sister worked opening 1974 and was assigned to the “Boats”. She spend the year as a breaker since the boats never opened. The story we were always told was when the park brought the land from Switlik, he claimed he never sold them the lake. So the boats and all the vegetation from Bandstand to the Aqua Stadium were left untouched, hiding the lake. Once G.A. won the lawsuit, approximately 1983, they took over the lake, cleared the brush, built Great Lake Grandstand, and finally put in the boats. The original boats were electric and stored at Camp Wanda for years and deteriorated. New two person paddle boats were used along with the original dock. A buoy-fence was strung along the flume supports on the left so people could not paddle out into the full lake. I believe the boats did cost extra.

 

I wonder why they didn't simply install the boats in Lahaway Creek in front of the Fort once they determined they were banned from the lake?

Link to post
Share on other sites

I wonder why they didn't simply install the boats in Lahaway Creek in front of the Fort once they determined they were banned from the lake?

 

 

Probably because at the time, you didn't have the pedestrian pass-through under the Mine Train - PLUS the train path was over the lake which could be a potential safety issue. The paddle boats did in fact operate in the 80's for two seasons...

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
×
×
  • Create New...