Deer Park Funland Photos from 1979.

Timber-Rider's avatar

My mom decided to clean out some old boxes she had in storage, and we came across a few shoe boxes filled with old family photos, and in among those photos were pictures from a family trip to Deer Park, from May of 1979, the year of the debut of the Deer Park Corkscrew.

So, when anyone asks me how wooded the park was, I can show them. Photos include the parks old ferris wheel, scrambler, and tilt-a-whirl. Also several photos of the lining up the Mutley's Putt Putts, and it's beautiful wooded setting. There is also a single photo of a portion of the park's old Spider ride, and beyond that, you can see the fence where they penned in the deer. The spider was right next to the entrance to the corkscrew. And, My mother and I are in one of the spider cars, and my brother Charlie is in the car next to us, as I am watching the corkscrew climb it's lift hill. Unfortunately my dad took all the pictures, so there is no shot of the corkscrew in that photo. There are also no photos of the corkscrew in the photos we found, but they were scattered, so they are in there somewhere I'm sure. Just haven't found them yet.

Also among these photos is a picture of all of us kids on the train, a shot of the old wooden carousel, and a shot of the old pic nic grounds, which is where Zach's Zoomer, and the Bee Bop car ride sit today. You can see how many wonderful old trees were dozed to put in those rides. That area was not hit by the storms. The amount of trees that the park removed during it's expansion might surprise you. There really isn't anything left, of what used to be there.

Also in these photos was a picture of my 6th grade girlfriend Dawn. These old photos sure brought back memories. And, reminds me of how much I really hated my hair! It was down past my shoulders! YUK!!

Need to add a slight correction. Not all of the photos are from May of 1979. I looked them all over again, and a few of them are from July of 1977. Thanks to Kodak, the month and year of each photo is printed in the bottom corner of each photo. In 1977 I was 12, and 14 in the 79 photos. I only noticed the year difference because of the ungly shirt I was wearing in one photo, was different than the ugly shirt I was wearing in another photo. Same camera, different year!

Last edited by Timber-Rider,

So you took the time to make a post about some photos you came across but yet aren't willing to provide a link so we can see them????

Last edited by Chitown,

My favorite MJ tune: "Billie Jean" which I have been listening to alot now. RIP MJ.

Are the pictures posted somewhere? Also, with all the other MA ranting posts, I was figuring you were much younger.

So this adds a new perspective. It sounds like you were happy with Michigan's Adventure (Deer Park Funland) as a kid, but you have become upset with what it has become today.

I think it's pretty common for enthusiasts to fall in love with a park as a kid and wanting to go back to that simpler, happier time as it changes over the years. But, I guess you have to realize that without those changes, Michigan's Adventure would likely not still exist today in any form. So, while you might not be happy with the $10 smoothies, at least you can still go back to this place with your mother and remember all the good times that you shared together.

Timber-Rider's avatar

I am just seeing these pictures for the first time today, as my mom brings the boxes of photos out of where she had them stored. It has just been a couple hours, and it took time to go through and sort them out. So, it's only been a short time that I have been looking at them.

Also, I do not have my scanner set up to transfer the photos to my computer. Also, these photos are over 30 years old, and it will take time to get them onto the computer. I just haven't done that yet. But, trust me, if I had these on my computer already, I would have post them to the site. Once I get them on my computer I will be happy to post them.

The photos are also faded with age, so they aren't the best pictures out there. This is going back to the days when the poloroid instant camera was all the rage, we didn't have digital cameras back then, and movies were shot on 8 mm film with bulky dinosaur cameras, and no VHS. And, just so you know, I will be 47 in September.

As for the comment about being unhappy about Michigan's Adventure, the main thing that bothers me about the park today, is that they assume that they should charge people the same prices in park that they charge at Cedar Point. $10.00 for parking $15 to $20 for meals. I just think the park would be more enjoyable if the amount of money they charge for their services equals the value of what you are getting for that money.

Example. Cedar Point has many food options, that are high priced, but you can find more reasonable food items in the park. At MA it seems every food item in a basket works out to the same price no matter what you get, even buying an ice cream cone is a sock to your wallet. But, it wasn't that long ago, that you could get that same $6.00 cone for $1.50 and so on. people will say go to the buffet, which really isn't much of a buffet at all, nothing compared to what you get at Cedar Point for the same price, and the quality of the food is only a fraction of the value of food you get at CP, KI, or CW. They are simply charging way more than what it's worth. And, that's the only thing that bothers me about it. And, their $10.00 parking charge is outrageous. $3.00 would be more reasonable to me, considering the park pays little to improve the roads that lead to the park. Which is in the middle of nowhere.

I also think they could have been better in their planning, and not turn this once beautiful wooded park into a concrete jungle. That is more of the former owners fault, but after seeing the area around the Lame new Beach Party attraction, they are just as guilty, but, at least they have made some attempts to make it nicer.

I would be very happy to see them lower their food prices, and parking fee. Even if they just lowered each $3 or $4 it would be better than the robbery they are socking guests with today. Otherwise the park looks decent, and is operated fairly well, with just one more complaint. I notice on very busy days, that there are fewer rafts available for the slides, yet they have mountains of them that you can rent. Why not put some of those rentals out on a day when it is busy? Or bring in more free ones? It seems to me, they are cutting back to rent more. And, I think that's aweful.

My local campground started doing the MA thing, and started renting out beach chairs at the pool. One of the employees said, there may come a day where you can't bring your own chairs in anymore, and you will have to rent one unless you want to sit on the cement. Wouldn't be at all surprised to see MA do the same with the rafts.

HeyIsntThatRob?'s avatar

Check out this thread before deciding to title a thread about photos.

The linked one is the correct way. Your's is not.

Misleading threads are no fun.


Timber-Rider's avatar

Sorry about that. I never meant to mislead anyone. I was so excited in seeing these old pictures again, that I thought I would share. Next time I will make sure I posts the photos first, and add the comments later.

Imagine finding a photo of your old 6th grade girlfriend after not seeing that photo for over 30 years, or something else that you might think other people would be interested in, And try to keep it to yourself.

To me this is no different tan any non photo TR. Sure would like to have seen the photos of someones recent trip to Six flags, but, I'll just have to settle for reading about it. No problem.

My post also dealt with the state of the park between then and now. I would love to see what the park would be like today, if they had not done away with all those wonderful old trees. I'd bet it would be beautiful, and certainly more shady!

Last edited by Timber-Rider,

I remember the park from that time period. I can't wait to see the pics!

Timber-Rider's avatar

Thanks Mourningglorie;

I don't have my scanner up and ready, but I am going to attempt to take photos of the pictures with my digital camera, or, I might take them to Meijer and have them placed on a CD, and I can upload them to my computer all at once. That is if they haven't raised their prices to high since that last time I did that with my Kiss concert photos. Too bad I don't have the old negatives, then I could just have it put on a card.

I will be in Grand Rapids helping a friend move tomorrow, but hope to get the photos online as soon as I can. Then maybe all of the people who claim that I bitch to much and, make up lies will know that everything I say on here is true. I don't have any reason to make things up. And, why would anyone make up stuff about roller coasters?

Unless of course they are like my friend David, whom every single time we ride the Batman ride, he has to freak people out, by saying that he was there one time when one of the trains flew off the track and killed a bunch of people. Just to see if anyone would be stupid enough to believe that, and tries to get me to go along with it. And, I just reply, don't listen to him, he got hit in the head by the tilt-a-whirl when he was a kid, and aint been the same since. And, that is the only lie about an amusement parking ride I have ever told. My friend wasn't hit by a tilt-a -whirl. he's just full of crap. LOL!!

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