I never thought an amusement park could be both fascinating in terms of its history and also so much fun for all ages today.
I never thought an amusement park could be both fascinating in terms of its history and also so much fun for all ages today. Lakeside Amusement Park brings history to life and is a place for all ages. The park was built by Adolf Zang and Frank Kirchoff more than a century ago, and was christened Memorial Day, 1908, by Zang's daughter, Gertrude, who broke a bottle of champagne against a tower at the main entrance as if she were launching a ship. Then Denver Mayor Robert Speer turned on the vast amount of machinery in the park by pressing a button in his downtown office, and the press and the park's first visitors got to hear Golden Mayor John Vivian and Lakeside Mayor Marvin Adams make speeches on the park's platform.
Recently, I interviewed one of the public relations managers, Brenda Fishman. She told me that, over more than a century of existence, Lakeside has kept its family-oriented atmosphere, with new rides added over the decades. The Merry-Go-Round is now the only ride that was there the day the park opened. If you're planning to visit, be sure that you don't miss Lakeside's signature rides, including the Cyclone, a giant white roller coaster, or the Wild Chipmunk, which is my favorite. If you're looking for more low-key motion, try the train in the park, which includes a beautiful scenic drive around Lake Rhoda, named after Brenda's mom.
Perhaps what makes this park so distinctive is that everywhere you look, people are smiling and laughing, having the time of their lives. And here's a tip: To get free admission and parking tickets, become part of the reading program offered by the Arapahoe Library District and other suburban libraries.
The best time to visit this spectacular, historic park is on weeknights, according to Brenda Fishman, who adds that working at the park is nearly as much fun as being there as a visitor. "Working here, you get to do fun stuff. You get to make cotton candy, and things [that guests] don't really think about," says Brenda, "I like this business a lot. You get to help people have fun, and you come here and people are smiling and having fun with their families, and you realize what it's all about."
Do you want to visit Lakeside?It's south of I-70, and just west of Sheridan, on 64th Avenue. Be sure to visit on the less busy weeknights for premium pick on rides ~ some rides like the Cyclone and Chipmunk can get very busy on weekends and lines can be a lengthy wait.