Amusement Parks of Baltimore & Maryland

Tolchester Beach  is not in Baltimore City, but Kilduff’s is focusing more on the entire State of Maryland. Over the years, Kilduffs has added much of Maryland and this postcard is the perfect header for this page. Just a quick steamboat trip to the other side of the Chesapeake Bay, and you were in Tolchester Beach.
I believe the old Tolchester Park opened in the late 1870’s but I’m still working on the exact year. I do know that by 1962, the park grounds went up for auction after a foreclosure,


Bay Shore Park
Amusement Park

Before Baltimoreans traveled to Ocean City and the Atlantic Ocean Resorts, a day at the beach would often mean visiting one of the Chesapeake Bay Beaches or parks. Located in “Eastern Most Baltimore County” was Bay Shore Park, 30 acres of land , which included a pier jutting out on the water  where a hot summer day could be cooled by the Bay breezes.   The park had a pier for the steamboats coming out of Baltimore City, and a streetcar  line also ran down to the Park . The Park opened in 1906 , and was sold to Bethlehem Steel in 1947 and torn down ( So the competition could not buy the property according to rumours) . One of the more popular rides was the ” People Dipper “, a ride that was actually located in the Bay’s waters, and would swing around and dip the riders into the water.  The rides were moved to a new park around 1950, on Bay Island Beach,  in which Bethlehem Steel again bought that site in 1964, and closed same. What was left of the that old park burned down a few years later..
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In 1911 – the Merry Go Round was being listed for sale in an auction. 
In 1913 – AN Ad by Bay Shore Park, list it as ” Baltimore’s Atlantic City”
In 1925 – the annual International Schneider  Trophy Seaplane race held at Bay Shore Park was postponed due to poor weather. 
In 1930 – United Railways of Baltimore held their 25 year club outing, which was a club of employees who had been with the company for a number of years. This year was a bit different as they had a woman in the group to join in. 
In 1931 – Plans were in the works for a ” bay bridge “. some of the planning had established that the western side of the bridge would be in the area of Bay Shore Park. Another Plan was to have Sandy Point near Annapolis the western end of the bridge.

In 1931 – the South Atlantic Outdoor Swimming and Diving Championship was held at Bay Shore Park.
In 1932 , over 9,000 people visited Bay Shore Park in June as temperatures reached into the 90s.
In 1937, much of Bay Shore Park had been rebuilt, after a storm destroyed much of the park that Spring. 

In 1947, there was a drowning at the Bay Shore
Park.
1949 – I found ads for Lease the Concessions Stand at the New Bay Shore Park. Odd thing was the ad was in a Miami Florida Paper and not here in Maryland.
In 1951 – the empty boat of a man was found off the shore of the Old Bay Shore Park, empty and taking on water.
In 1954 , several people were struck by a bolt of lightning while taking cover from the storm under a tin roof pavilion.
In 1956, Kid’s Day at New Bay Shore Park stated the park was only 25 minutes from downtown Baltimore, and buses were available to go to the park, via the Greyhound Terminal. The ad also mentioned there was ” nettle- protected”  swimming provided. 
1956 – A wanted kidnapper was spotted at the New Bay Shore Park and captured soon after. 


Carlin’s Park
Amusement Park- Near Baltimore’s Park Circle.

  Below is a collection of old postcards of Baltimore’s Carlin’s Park.  Located in Northwest Baltimore City,  on the northwestern corner of Reisterstown Road and Druid Park Avenue ( commonly known as Park Circle ), the park operated until the 1950’s, when it was closed and later converted into Carlin’s Drive In Theatre, the only Drive In Theatre within the Baltimore City Limits. The Drive In later closed down in the 1970’s and the site is a mix of industrial and businesses today
In 1930 – there were many social pages of events at both Druid Hill Park and Carlin’s. Ice Hockey Leagues apparently played here as well. 
In 1937 – Carlins Park suffered a major fire. As a result of the fire, there was an estimated $250,000 in damage, with only the Dance Hall escaping any fire damage. At the time, it was called the third worst fire in the City, reaching ten alarms.

By 1938, the Park was reopened with no mention of a fire. The Roller Rink was listed however as “New”. An ad for the Fourth of July in 1938 lists Fireworks, Picnics, Dancing and Tufto the Clown “The Funniest Man Alive” as part of the attractions.
 In 1942 , one of the attractions was ” The World a Million Years Ago” showing prehistoric monsters .
In 1944, the park was advertised as Baltimore’s Million Dollar Playground”, with swimming, Roller skating, rides, and more.
 In 1950 – Carlin’s advertised the ” Miday of Mirth”, with 30 big rides, an Olympic Pool and Roller link. Through the 1950’s all types of events in boxing were listed for Carlin’s. 


Electric Park
Belvedere Avenue At Reisterstown Road 

Electric Park was an early amusement park, which started out as a trotting track ,  located in the Northwest section of Baltimore City. The park was razed around 1915, and development since then has completely erased any traces of the old park. The postcard ( below )  shows the park around 1907. A trolley pulled up right to the gate of the Park, and light bulbs were used to light up the Park at night, a new curiosity in the early 1900’s. The park, had rides, fountains, a theatre, and various amusements. In 1909, a airship launched from Electric Park and flew to downtown Baltimore, having a bit of a crash landing on a roof of a downtown business. Electric Park boasted 24 rides, including a carousel, 2 roller coasters, swimming pool, boat lake, vaudeville, band concerts, and the cyclorama of the Johnstown Flood, 
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In 1907 , A horse race is advertised at Electric Park with a purse of $300.
In 1910 , the Park reopens that year adorned with thousands of colored lights. 
Features such as the “Trained Goats”, The ” Snake Exhibition” & the ” Palace of Mystery” all reported good attendance. Also that year, a five mile motorcycle race challenge was made and accepted. Trotting Races were also being scheduled for that year. Also listed in a separate ad was the sale of the Props from the production “Fighting the Flames”, which list all the props used in that production being sold at auction. 

 

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The Enchanted Forest 

Ellicott City – Howard County Maryland 
The Enchanted Forest was one of Baltimore’s Later parks, Opening in the 1950’s. It has been torn down and much of the material from the park has been moved to park in Howard County. 

“The Enchanted Forest on U.S. Route 40 , 15 miles west from Baltimore, about seven minutes west of Beltway exit 15. The castle-walled storybook playland for youngsters under 12 features  a variety of rides with themes which have been taken from the pages of fairy tales, Mother Goose and other children’s favorites……Children can take the Teacup Ride to the court of the Queen of Hearts or the Safari Ride through an African jungle. Little Toot : the Lovable tugboat : will take them around his lake , and a raft will carry them to Robinson Crusoe’s island stockade.  Cinderella, Aladdin, Snow White and Mother Goose herself are at the Enchanted Forest to greet their admirers….Children will also find real ponies to ride and deer, goats, bunnies, and a lamb to pet. Snacks are served by the Merry Men at Robin Hood’s Barn.  Enchanted Forest is open from mid-May to mid-September on Weekdays from 10AM to 4 PM and on the weekends from 10 AM to 6 PM. From mid-September to the end of October, it is open weekends only, from 10 AM to 5 PM. Closed winter.
Admission : $ 1.25 per adult ; 75 cents for children between two and 12, children under 2 , free. There are extra charges ( usually a quarter each ) for some of the rides. “
For years the park sat vacant, until the property was sold and later used as a Shopping Center. The Enchanted Forest” shopping center of course. The old park was fenced off for years and you could peek through the chain linked fence and see what was left.  Then one day, my son and me drove by and noticed the fence was gone and there were no signs saying you could no go into the site, and so we did. I have pictures on file I have to find, but very little remained of the park. However, the main attractions and all types of details were saved and moved to the nearby Clark’s Elioak Farm. where you can visit much of the park.

 


 

We have a large amount of photos on the Enchanted Forest we have to dig out and post……
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Gwynn Oak Park 

Woodlawn ( Baltimore County ) Maryland 

  Another of the amusement parks in Baltimore,  Gwynn Oak Park could be found on Gwynn Oak Avenue in Northwest Baltimore, between the City County Live and Woodlawn. The Park has been gone since 1974, partly due to Huricane Agnes damage.  Adam has a great page on the old park.  The park was serviced by streetcar lines, and has rides which included the Ferris Wheel, Looper, Moon Rocket, Flying Scooter, and “Dodgem Cars”. The park was also popular for picnics.
”  One of the last of the old-time midway-like amusement parks in the Baltimore-Washington area, Gwynn Oak offers thrill rides ( and tamer ones too ) , games and boating. It is open from mid-April to Labor Day …….Closed Mondays…Admission is free. Rides costs from 20 cents to 40 cents.”

 

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Riverview Park 
Baltimore Maryland 

Riverview Park opened as Lowrey’s Place, a beer garden, which later named itself Point Breeze. By 1898, the beer garden made way for the RiverView Amusement park, which last to 1929, when it was torn down for the building of the Western Electric’s Point Breeze plant. Riverview was said to have been one of Baltimore’s more popular parks back in the day, with good rides and good food. It ‘ Nickname for years was the ” Coney Island of the South”. As seen in the postcards below, Riverview had quite an entranceway, and over the years, the park  survived several fires

 

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Glen Echo Park – Montgomery County Maryland

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