These 7 Abandoned Amusement Parks In Connecticut Provide And Eerie Glimpse Into The Past
In Connecticut, we are lucky to have two active amusement parks with thrill rides, water slides, and midway games. But in the not so distant past, the Nutmeg had many more of these locales attracting visitors from near and far on summer weekends. A look at these abandoned amusement parks that were once thriving tourist destinations offers an eerie glimpse into our history.
1. Pleasure Beach, Bridgeport
From 1898 to 1958, Pleasure Beach was a hotspot for recreation seekers. The island amusement park was connected by a swinging bridge to the mainland and on Memorial Day of 1938 saw 30,000 visitors. A huge ballroom hosted big bands of the day while a roller coaster, the Sky Rocket, provided thrills. The park also had a carousel, fun house, miniature railroad, kiddie park, and other carnival games and rides. Beginning in the 1950s, the park was plagued with fires, fell into disrepair and in 1996 the bridge burnt down and the park was completely abandoned. In 2014, Pleasure Beach was reopened with its sandy shores and fishing pier available to beachgoers via water taxi. Learn more
2. Savin Rock Amusement Park, West Haven
Originally called the White City, Savin Rock Amusement Park thrived from 1870 to 1966. At its peak, the park boasted a mile long midway, fun houses, bumper cars, and several roller coasters. In the 20's Liberty Pier was added to the park with a funhouse, Bluebeard's Castle and a roller coaster named The Devil. Savin Rock Amusement Park was closed in 1966 due to its loss of popularity.
3. Suburban Park, Unionville
Suburban Park operated for just ten years between 1895 to 1905. It was built by the Hartford Suburban Trolley Line to draw riders to the trolley service. The amusement park had a swimming lake, dance hall, merry-go-round, and its famous electric fountain. When Suburban Park closed, it was slowly reclaimed by nature. It now lies within a forest park and you can hike through the remains. Learn more
4. Wildwood Park, Dayville
Wildwood Park was created at Alexander's Lake in 1903 by the Connecticut Electric Railway. An outing to the park cost 10 cents on the trolley. Picnicking, swimming, dancing, and roller skating were popular past times. Though Wildwood Park did not have roller coasters or a carousel, monkey cages and the moving picture house kept guests entertained for a time.
5. Holy Land USA, Waterbury
Holy Land USA was a biblical theme park attracting up to 40,000 visitors yearly. The park operated from 1955 to 1984 featuring buildings and dioramas depicting key events and locales from the ministry of Jesus. Since its closure, the buildings have fallen into disrepair and are slowly being reclaimed by nature. Learn more
6. Golden Spur Park, East Lyme
The Golden Spur Park was built along the New London and East Lyme Street Railway in 1905 to increase ridership on the line. Visitors were treated to a number of amusements including a skating rink, dance hall, merry-go-round, and fun house. Boats and canoes were available to rent and a lovely little pagoda-style tea house was built on an island and known as "Little Japan." The Golden Spur Park closed in 1924 and its inn and annex building are now private residences.
7. Roton Point Park, Rowayton
Thousands of visitors would flock each season to this amusement park directly on the Long Island Sound. Roton Point Park operated from the 1870s through 1941 featuring a 7,500-square-foot dance pavilion over the waters of the Sound. The park also had a carousel, roller coaster, midway rides, and picnic grove with prime views of the water. Today, Roton Point is a family beach club where members swim, picnic, and relax. Some of the original amusement park buildings have been restored and still exist including the bathhouse, gazebo, and hotel.
Did you know about all of these abandoned amusement parks in Connecticut? Have you ever visited any of them either before or after they closed? Enjoy a little urban exploration by taking this short hike into the gates of an
OnlyInYourState may earn compensation through affiliate links in this article.