- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
Friends of the Chesapeake Beach Railway Museum and the Bayside History Museum members are giving local residents an opportunity to share their memories of the old Chesapeake Beach Amusement Park later this month.
“Chesapeake Beach Amusement Park Chat” is a free and informal discussion where residents are invited to share some of their experiences at the park at 2 p.m. Sunday, March 24, at the North Beach Town Hall, 8916 Chesapeake Ave. in North Beach.
“We want to relive memories with other people in Calvert County and the [Twin] Beaches who were living there, but also let people know who didn’t live there or visit what it was like,” Joanie Kilmon, a volunteer at both the Bayside and Chesapeake Beach Railway museums, said of the purpose of the discussion.
Hilary Dailey, president of the Friends of the Chesapeake Beach Railway Museum, said the group has hosted “bayside chats” over the last several years and this was the next topic in a series of chats.
The amusement park, which originally was on the town’s boardwalk but was moved onto land from the 1930s to the early 1940s, was reopened in 1946 after the end of World War II in 1945, Kilmon said. The discussion will focus on the amusement park during the time frame of 1946 to 1972, when the park then shut down for good, Kilmon said. She said she hopes people will “bring their memories” to share either in story or picture format.
Those who may not have had the opportunity to experience the park are also invited to learn about and join the discussion, Kilmon said. Attendees will also enjoy a slideshow presentation of old photographs of the amusement park, she said.
“It’s going to be just a fun afternoon,” Kilmon said.
Grace Mary Brady, president of the Bayside History Museum, will be recording the event for posterity, according to a press release.
Brady said the information given at the discussion will be part of a “brand new exhibit” at the Bayside History Museum, which is in the process of being built. She said the amusement park will be represented in the exhibit by the old merry-go-round, which now resides at Watkins Park in Prince George’s County.
Brady said the merry-go-round was a Dentzel Carousel, which is a hand-carved carousel, and the original animals that were part of the ride are now very valuable. She said two of the original animals will be a part of the museum’s exhibit.
Dailey said she encourages anyone who is interested in speaking about or hearing about the park to come to the discussion about an important part of the town’s history.
“It’s a big part of the history and background of Chesapeake Beach,” Dailey said.
Kilmon agreed that it is important for people to share their experiences of the amusement park because it was such a large part of Chesapeake Beach’s “rich history.”
Kilmon said the event is being hosted by her and her two sisters, Diane and Gail, better known locally as “the Donovan sisters.”
For more information, contact Dailey at 301-855-4028 or firstname.lastname@example.org.