Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Way Back Wednesday ~ 1971 Beverly Park & Kiddieland

One of the fondest memories of my childhood was Sunday mornings when my dad would take me to Beverly Park to ride the ponies. It cost one dollar and you got 7 times around the track.
Over the years the cost stayed the same but you got less go-arounds.

Here I am smiling for my dad while my pony takes a drink half way through the ride.
My favorite pony was Popcorn and I was disappointed that I didn't get to ride him on the day we came with the Polaroid.
I can still vividly remember waiting at the gate (behind me in this pic) wondering which pony would be mine that day. The sweet anticipation never lessened in all the years I went there.


There were 3 tracks.
One for walking, one for trotting and one for running.
Often the ponies decided about half way through that they didn't want to run anymore and one of the workers would come out onto the track and shoo them back into a gallop.


I was much more of a daredevil as a kid and loved the exhilaration of racing around the track as fast as my pony could take me. My mother always worried I was going to snap my neck.
In my right hand you can see the blue plastic "whip" they gave the kids to make their pony go.
I don't think that kind of thing would fly today.


Every once in awhile we would bring my best friend Sally and she would only go on the walking track. Which meant I would be finished about 10 minutes ahead of her and had to stand there and wait and watch while her pony would leisurely stroll around the track. And one time they forgot to pull her horse off the track at the end of her turn and she got to stay on for another 2 or 3 circles which meant I was stuck standing at the fence wishing I could again.

And after the pony ride I could usually talk my dad into taking me next door to Kiddieland and going on a few of the rides.
I always wanted to go on the funhouse even though I inevitably came out crying because it sacred the bejeejus out of me at the end when it looked like your ride car was going to be run over by an oncoming train.
I don't think my dad understood why I wanted to go week after week.
Frankly I don't either!
Here I am on the carousel:



They eventually tore down the park and pony ride and built the Beverly Center shopping mall.
But these will stay forever in mind as one of the happiest times of my childhood.

Recently found these great videos:








Have a great Wednesday everyone!!!

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