Posts Tagged ‘Chute-a-chutes’

Luna Park’s “boatloads of screaming humanity”

July 30, 2008

New Yorkers at the turn of the last century were dazzled by Coney Island’s Luna Park, a 22-acre amusement park fantasyland, with “babbling brooks, Japanese gardens, German villages, Irish villages, Eskimo villages, Hindu villages, a Chinese theatre, a monkey theatre, and scores of other attractions calculated to make the average visitor drain his purse before he leaves,” reported The New York Times in 1903.

The chutes were an especially popular attraction. As the Times story put it, “The Court of Honor, or main avenue, opens out finally on a broad esplanade, bordering on a lake, into which a ‘chute-a-chutes,’ brilliantly lighted, was precipitating its boatloads of screaming humanity.”