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West Point Park

West Point Park was a suburban Philadelphia amusement park in West Point, Pennsylvania, near Lansdale and North Wales, and was one of the the earliest amusement parks opened in Pennsylvania. The park was in operation from 1867 to 1987, under two names: Zeiber’s Park from 1867 to 1946 and West Point Park from 1947 to 1987.

As Zeiber’s Park

Hezekiah H. Zieber purchased a plot of land in West Point, Pennsylvania, in 1857. He had an interest in having some of his land be a pleasure grounds park – a park without amusement rides. In early 1865, Zeiber was drafted into the Union Army, one of the last people drafted in his township. He only served several months in the army because the Civil War ended. He was discharged shortly after the war ended.

After Zeiber returned from his service, he began planning a park for his property, following on his earlier interest. In 1867, he opened what he called Zeiber’s Park. The park was a pleasure ground with a lake and some pavilions. In the following decade, Zeiber continued updating the park, including adding a steam carousel, and row boats and canoes for rent.

Zieber passed away in 1898, and the park was inherited by his family. Five years later, in February 1903, the park was listed for sale by E. Hoot, though the park continued to operate. It appears the park was not sold to anyone at the time, and it remained in the Zieber family until they sold to William and Freda Okamoto, in 1942.

As West Point Park

On December 2, 1946, the Okamoto’s renamed Zeiber’s Park as West Point Park. The main feature was a roller skating rink, along with a carousel, a train ride, and bumper cars. In 1954, the Okamoto’s sold the park to William D. Evans and Edward Booz.

On March 30, 1954, Evans and Booz created West Point Park, Inc., with Evans as the company’s president. They went on to add up to 22 amusements including two roller coasters in the following years. In the 1980s, William Evans became sole owner of West Point Park. At the same time, the park began to decline as liability insurance costs significantly grew. In 1987, Evans decided to close West Point Park.

The park remained in limbo for the following two years, until the property was sold to developers. Today, most of the park is a housing development.

Park entrance
Photo of the entrance of West Point Park with Jumper in the background. The two photos above of West Point Park are via Old Images of Montgomery County.
WPP Train
West Point Park Train. Photo is courtesy of the Lansdale Historical Society.

Rides information

There were two roller coasters in West Point Park:

  • Wild Mouse, a steel coaster, operated from 1958 to 1976
    • Manufactured by B.A. Schiff & Associates
  • The Jumper, a wooden coaster, operated from 1965 to 1987
    • Manufactured by National Amusement Device Company

Other rides include:

  • a steam carousel, circa 1897
  • row boats and canoes, circa 1897
  • swan boats, circa 1905
  • Whip, manufactured by W.F. Mangles Company
    • purchased from Woodside Park in 1955
  • Ferris Wheel
    • manufactured by Eli Bridge Company
  • Round Up
    • manufactured by Frank Hrubetz & Company
  • Paratrooper
    • manufactured by Frank Hrubetz & Company
  • Kiddieland area with a number of kiddie rides.

Ownership history

This is a timeline of the owners of the park, 1867-1987.

1867 – 1898: Hezekiah H. Zieber

1898 – 1942: Zieber family

1942 – 1954: Okamoto family

1954 – 1987: West Point Park, Inc.


Location

West Point Park was located within a rectangular space bordered by Garfield Avenue, 4th Street, Park Road, and South Broad Street, in West Point.

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