Does any of the older buzzers here remember Palisades Park? Yes, there was a one-hit-wonder song about it... but it also seems to have been a really sweet park.
There's a little history on the park there. It really looks like it was a nice park. They had roughly 45 to 50 rides at the park, and for its time... that's pretty incredible. Their last year in existance was in September, 1971 (so it pre-dates quite a bit of us).
The thing that intregues me the most is WHY it closed. According to their FAQ on the website posted above:
By the mid-1960s, Palisades had become one of the most popular and most visited amusement parks in the country. The crowds that headed to the park each summer was more than the small New Jersey communities could handle. In 1967, the town of Cliffside Park (one of the towns in which Palisades was located) rezoned the land for high rise development. This brought many lucrative offers from land developers for the park's owner, who by this time was in his 70s. He eventually sold the land to the Winston-Centex corporation for over $12 million.
Sound fimilar? Sounds a little like Magic Mountain's situation.It's ashame. The park really sounded like a sweet park, and judging from RCDB, they also had quite a few coasters throughout their history. If it were a park in existance today, do you think they'd be doing just as well, and keep the park going... or sell-out for realestate development?BTW: How close is this park's location compared to Six Flags Great Adventure?
It's a shame it closed for the reasons it did. Especially considering the eyesores that replaced it.
It pains me to think that there was once a world-class amusement not too far from where I live... too bad I was born about 10 years too late! There is an excellent book and video about the park and the one of the local cable stations recently aired a special on the place. Not sure if it was the video or something entirely different, as it's been a while since I watched the video.
Basically, Palisades Park down because it was too successful. The traffic that the park attracted got to be too much for the surrounding community and I think they played a part in getting the park land re-zoned. Irving Rosenthal- the park's owner and once the owner of the Coney Island Cyclone- vowed not to sell the park but then opted to when he got too old to run it and had no children or family to pass the park to.
You may or may not know that Morgan Hughes was a big vendor at the park, as he imported a lot of European rides to the park in its final years. He tried to get the park to reopen for one final year but when that fell through, he purchased a small park in Mechanicsburg PA called Williams Grove and brought many of the rides there. The train on the Cyclone is part of one of the trains that used to run on the Palisades Park Cyclone- the name of the Williams Grove Zipper was changed to Cyclone with the arrival of the "new" train.
Also, there were rumors of a new Palisades Park being built in Mount Olive, NJ but that obviously never happened. Not sure why.
If someone that goes by the name of OlympicParkFan is still on these boards, he can likely add a lot to what I just said. George, are you out there???
This park boasted 19 coasters in its history.
Palisades and Coney island were often in competition for the newest, latest, greatest, etc....much like SFMM and CP in the late 90s, only closer in proximity... ;)
-------Cut from his web page---------
In 1959 Freddy recorded a song that his mother had written called Tallahassee Lassie. It soared to the Top Ten of the "Billboard Hot 100 Chart". The song marked the first of 22 songs by Freddy to appear on the Billboard Chart.
Billboard US Top 40 Pop Singles for “Freddy Cannon”
1. Tallahassee Lassie – Peaked at #6 on 05/11/59
2. Okefenokee – Peaked at #43 on 08/24/59
3. Way Down Yonder In New Orleans – Peaked at #3 on 11/23/59 (GOLD)
4. Chattanooga Shoe Shine Boy – Peaked at #34 on 02/22/60
5. Jump Over – Peaked at #28 on 05/09/60
6. The Urge – Peaked at #60 on 05/16/60
7. Happy Shades Of Blue – Peaked at #83 on 07/25/60
8. Humdinger – Peaked at #59 on 10/10/60
9. Muskrat Ramble – Peaked at #54 on 01/09/61
10. Buzz Buzz A-Diddle-It – Peaked at #51 on 05/01/61
11. Transistor Sister – Peaked at #35 on 07/31/61
12. For Me And My Gal – Peaked at #71 on 10/16/61
13. Twistin’ All Night Long – Peaked at #68 on 01/06/62 (credited to “Danny & The Juniors with Freddy Cannon”)
14. Teen Queen Of The Week – Peaked at #92 on 02/03/62
15. Palisades Park – Peaked at #3 on 05/12/62
16. What’s Gonna Happen When Summer’s Done – Peaked at #45 on 09/08/62
17. If You Were A Rock And Roll Record – Peaked at #67 on 11/10/62
18. Patty Baby – Peaked at #65 on 05/04/63
19. Everybody Monkey – Peaked at #52 on 08/03/63
20. Abigail Beecher – Peaked at #16 on 02/01/64
21. Action – Peaked at #13 on 08/14/65
22. The Dedication Song – Peaked at #41 on 02/19/66
23. Let’s Put The Fun Back In Rock N Roll – Peaked at #81 on 09/26/81 (credited to “Freddy Cannon & The Belmonts”)
Damn Whipper Snappers
OT *** Edited 7/27/2006 2:23:36 AM UTC by 1EyedJack***
Not sure if that's the exact lyric or not... Anyway, who wrote the song "Palisades Park?"
A. Chuck Barris, who people probably remember better as the host of the 70's "The Gong Show." (Wish they'd bring that back... not the show, just the gong. They could use it on most of the reality/talent shows on TV nowadays.)
I don't think the song was written for Palisades Park, I think Chuck Barris wrote the song so the lyrics read:
..."at the amusement park" instead of "...down at Palisades Park".
When someone at the park got wind of the song, they made some kind of deal to change it to Palisades Park.
RGB...trying to remember the name of the brunetter woman who played Chuck Barris' foil on The Gong Show...and yes, I'd like to GONG most of the reality shows in their entirety, not JUST the contestants... :)
I absolutely loved The Gong Show. Chuck Barris looked like he got progressively more stoned throughout the show, the Unknown Comic and Gene Gene The Dancing Machine were awesome, and then there was the episode where every act came out and sang "Feelings". Good times!
Oh... Palisades Park looked nice. ;)
Ray P. *** Edited 7/27/2006 7:22:34 PM UTC by ProgRay***
But please don't bring up Match Game...Brett Summers always reminded me of a SLIGHTLY less-masculine Bea Arthur... LOL!
ME! (remember)... ;)
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