Geauga Lake Amusement Park Bites the Dust

Here are is an amusement park I’ve never been to, but I am sad it is closing. Partly because it holds memories for my husband’s family, and partly because it is an indication of how history does change things. It’s an era gone by.

Geauga Lake, at least the ride section, has seen its last season. Waterparks, like malls that look like small towns, are in in the U.S. (I don’t quite get why people don’t go to a real small town to shop instead of a mall that looks like a town. Pet peeve.)

Wild Water Kingdom that adjoins Geauga Lake has grown and grown in the past few years as the crowds on the coasters have diminished. Too bad. Founded in 1888, Geauga Lake is one of the oldest amusement parks in the United States. It started out as a place for picnics. In 1889, when a steam carousel was added, its role as an amusement park to entertain the masses was on it’s way. In its 100th year attendance was high, but Cedar Point, also in northern Ohio, has been competition it couldn’t keep up with. From what my relatives have said, Geauga Lake was a perfect place to go with kids because lines were not long and the rides were just the right size for the younger set.

I’m wondering what will happen to all the rides? Once when I was writing an article on Christmas light displays in Ohio, I interviewed a man who had bought the huge wooden soldiers from Coney Island (Ohio’s Coney Island) in an auction. Coney Island closed as a major amusement park in the early 70s and Kings Island became home to some of its rides. This photo is from Geauga Lake Today. If you go to the site, you’ll find a gallery of vintage postcard shots.