Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk is so cool. As the only remaining major seaside amusement park on the West Coast, the Boardwalk offers a unique combination of classic and modern rides, a sandy mile-long beach, and a variety of attractions. Fred W. Swanton, considered one of the greatest promoters and entrepreneurs of his time, laid plans for a casino and boardwalk — a “Coney Island of the West.”
This is my favorite seaside park. It has everything that memories are made of. The rides are all great for all ages. The Giant Dipper is one of the most exciting and smoothest coasters there is. Even though it was built in 1924, it's ageless. You can try and get the gold ring. How cool is that?.Riders on the outside horses can reach out and try to grab rings which then get tossed at the target which is a large clown's mouth. It is one of the only ring dispensers still operating in the world. Sometimes, riders keep the rings to remember their visit. How cool is that? The smell of the hot dogs, popcorn and sea air makes you never want to leave. At night the lights are beautiful.

The Carousel is a National Historic Landmark and local treasure. The hand-carved merry-go-round has been delighting adult’s and children’s memories since 1911. One of the greatest carousel carvers of all time, Master carver Charles I.D. Looff, delivered this hand carved beautiful carousel to the Boardwalk in 1911. Only five other intact Looff carousels remain in the United States.
The carousel music is provided from three antique band organs that are a special highlight of the Looff Carousel. The Boardwalk’s original Ruth & Sohn band organ has played alongside the carousel since 1911. The fully-restored antique received a beautiful new facade in 2009. In addition to the original Ruth organ, a rare Wurlitzer 165 band organ from the former Playland-at-the Beach amusement park in San Francisco now shares playing time with the Ruth. A smaller Wurlitzer 146 was added to the collection in 2011. 
The Looff Carousel and Giant Dipper roller coaster were both declared national landmarks in 1987.
The beach and boardwalk is a great place to visit. It’s a very cool place and is highly recommended.
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