Sunday, August 19, 2012

Rocky Point

Lincoln Park's Comet roller coaster was demolished Friday. It was built in 1947 for $80,000. The park’s 42 acres of land is expected to become a residential area.   We posted this on our facebook page yesterday and received hundreds of comments, all of them sad, and most of them including at least one fond memory of the Comet or Lincoln Park.

The Comet in its heyday

The park closed in 1987, after a fatality on the Comet. It was never re-opened and has stood abandoned ever since.

This made me think, of course, of Rocky Point which, as any Rhode Islander old enough to know will tell you - was really the happiest place on Earth!

In the 10 years we've been in business, we have had sooooo many customers ask about Rocky Point merchandise (products we sell and products that don't exist) and when they ask, they usually share a story about what Rocky Point Park meant to them.  

Recent aerial of Rocky Point

Rocky Point Lithograph

Rocky Point was first used for Sunday School outings in 1840, eventually growing into a popular resort. Various attractions were added over time, including a bowling alley, an early version of the Ferris wheel, a roller coaster and a hotel.

In 1883, the hotel and most of the other buildings were destroyed by fire. But by the turn of the century, the site had been developed as an amusement park. The park was devastated by the hurricane '38 and remained closed until 1948. When it re-opened it became the favorite Summer destination for people up and down the East Coast. People had first dates there, got engaged there, and took their grandchildren there to tell them about how it was when they were young.  

"You Must Be This Tall" Rocky Point Movie DVD  

Rocky Point Park is one of those Rhode Island things that you have to be a Rhode Islander to understand. Rocky Point is the source of shared memories,  both real and mythical, that make Rhode Island a community. There is a connection between Rhode Islanders that a wrecking ball can't change. 

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