Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Sabrina's Brochure Spotlight: Dutch Wonderland 198?

It was bound to happen sooner or later. We've come to one of the brochures in my collection which is totally, completely and utterly devoid of any date information! I can tell you with certainty that it hails from the mid- to late '80s. Beyond that, your guess is as good as mine. If anybody can help me solve this mystery, I'm all ears!

The castle on the cover of this brochure says it all: Dutch Wonderland is a place for kids! But unlike many of the other children's parks which began popping up all over this country in the '50s and '60s, Dutch Wonderland has always put an emphasis on rides in addition to themed areas and entertainment.

Most of the rides featured in this photo collage can still be enjoyed at Dutch Wonderland today. A few of them--the antique cars, train, and riverboat--actually opened with the park back in 1963. The Great American High Diving Show as well as the Merry-Go-Round debuted at the park in 1982, so we can assume that the brochure isn't any older than that!

If you've ever traveled through Lancaster, Pennsylvania, odds are you've driven right past Dutch Wonderland. The park's unlikely location along one of the major roads makes it nearly impossible to miss. It also makes it super convenient to check out these other great attractions in Pennsylvania Dutch Country, all of which were apparently owned by or affiliated with Dutch Wonderland at the time. Many people don't realize it, but Lancaster County truly is a tourist destination in this state.

Possibly the only clue to this brochure's date is the sign advertising an appearance by "Suzanne Marie" in the upper left-hand photo. Unfortunately, that did not get me very far either! On a more humorous note, I wonder why they felt the need to include the phone number of the local state police barracks in this brochure?! Somehow I don't expect to see roving gangs of Amish hoodlums harrassing park guests!

And finally, we conclude with advertisements for the gift shop and a nearby restaurant. I suppose you could say that this was an all-inclusive brochure! Now if only we could nail down the year it was published...