Thursday, June 30, 2011

A Blast From The Past - White City Park's Figure Eight

White City Amusement Park in Sheboygan Wisconsin was owned and operated by the Lakeview Hotel. The hotel, a theater and the amusement park stood on a bluff overlooking Lake Michigan. In 1890s a figure-eight roller coaster was built by C.O. Breinig. The park also had a petting zoo, a large carousel and some other small rides.

Like many parks of that time, White City was considered a "trolley" park, in 1892 the streetcar company had extended it lines out to the park. The streetcar was free for those folks that were attending an event at the parks theater. In its day the Lakeview Hotel was known far and wide.

In 1903, the Lakeview Hotel was destroyed by fire; it would be rebuilt only to burnt to the ground in the 1930s. The roller coaster was dismantled and moved to Union Park in Dubuque Iowa in 1908, operating as Roller Coaster until 1934. When it was torn down some of the wood was used to build a barn in Asbury, Iowa. Today all that remains of Sheboygan's first amusement complex are a few crumbling concrete foundations in the wooded area to the north of Lakeview Park.