Monday, August 17, 2015

Pay to get in. PRAY to get out! (A Huge Gallery of Fun Houses, Haunted Houses, and Dark Rides!)

As mentioned by me before, some of my fondest memories as a kid was spending my entire Summers in Wildwood, New Jersey! Walking the nearly two mile long boardwalk day and night would never get old to me . . . the food (Sam's Pizza and Curley's Fries on the reg), the prize wheel games and arcade games ("Gateway 26" collected many of my quarters!), and of course the rides . . . oh those fantastic rides! Now truth be told I've never been one for roller coaster or galvatron type rides . . . remember that chewing tobacco scene from "The Sandlot"? Well that was usually the end result any time I got brave enough to put my body into the hands of zero gravity. But one type of ride I always was able to handle and would flock to on a daily basis were the numerous "Dark Rides" that each of the 4 main Piers featured! Off hand (keep in mind I'm talking about the Mid 80s to the Early 90s here) I remember Morey's Piers having Dante's Inferno and a huge Ghostly Pirate Ship that was more of a Walk through attraction then a ride; Hunts' Pier had "The Golden Nugget", "The Whacky Shack", and a "Keystone Cops" rides; Mariner's Landing I believe had a Jungle Cruise that featured Cannibals; and the Nickels Midway Pier featured the infamous Castle Dracula (aka Dracula's Castle)

Credit: Dark in the Park 

A lot of pictures and info of all the rides I mentioned above can be found at two of my favorite sites on the web, that being Dark in the Park and Fun Chase, but today I'm here to share some pics from a new favorite I just became aware of, it's called Enchanted Kiddieland and is ran by a good good friend of mine name Missy Mazzaferro!

I became aware of Missy mutual love of Dark Rides when she posted the pics you are about to see below on her Facebook timeline a couple weeks back! I was in awe of the gaudy airbrushed monsters and the total disregard for copyright infringement that these rides that Missy has visited over the years all over the United States! 

First up is one of the rides I was mentioning early, I knew it best as "Dante's Inferno" as seen in the first 2 pictures from Wildwood, it's twin as it looks in Coney Island in the third pic, and how it looks now (a lot (l)tamer looking on the outside and known as "Dante's Dungeon"!

Next is 1313 Cemetary Way in Long Island Ny

 Dr. Morbid ride that was in Wildwood

 The Flying Witch in Playland New York 

The Ghost Hole in Coney Island

 The Haunted House in Ocean City, Maryland

Do the Freddy!

 Haunted Mansion in Rehoboth Beach

The Jersey Junk Yard that use to be in Wildwood

 Knoebel's Haunted House

Morbid Manor in Ocean City

SpookA Rama in Coney Island

Spook House in Keansburg, NJ

 The Devil's Den in New Conneaunt Park

The Old Mill in Rye Playland, NY

Well hope you enjoyed all these Pictures, I know I did! Thanks again Missy for allowing me to share them all here on SMF Page and please everyone be sure to visit the direct source HERE and like the facebook page attached to her site right HERE!

- Tom


  1. Awesome post! I'm a sucker for anything haunted house related!

  2. Most of those are survivors to this day, except one. The Jersey Junkyard in Wildwood was removed after 2011. As well as the Mummy 3D walkthrough next to it. Castle Dracula burned Jan 16, 2002 after standing for 25 years. Two juvenile males broke in and accidentally set it on fire, ran out and were arrested down the street. They got no jail time. Also, the Morbid Manor ride in Ocean City, MD which was meant to honor the walkthrough of the same name that burned down late 1995, has a new look on the outside. It replaced the Ghost, an Italian made dark ride. And, Spook House in Keansburg, NJ suffered damage from Hurricane Sandy but it is supposed to reopen after a complete restoration is completed. Dr. Blood’s House of Horror on Sportland Pier in North Wildwood, NJ closed after 1983 and was razed early 2007. Yes, it was SBNO all that time. The new owner of the pier in 1984, Ted Snyder had no interest in running rides. He let them sit until most were removed by the early 90’s and go-kart tracks built. Hopefully the trend of dark ride removals and fires is over. We have so few left in the US that were built from the 1930’s to the 1970’s.

    1. Ted Snyder was also a co-owner of Hunt’s Pier from 1986 to 1990 after Bud Hunt sold due to his age (79 or 80). You got some of your rides and piers mixed up. The pirate ship walkthrough (Skua) and jungle boat ride (Jungleland) were both on Hunt’s Pier, not on Morey’s and Mariner’s. They were both razed early 1989 along with the Flyer coaster, a train ride with a ghost town, and a mini car ride under the Flyer with various scenes. I was there in 1982-1983.