Riverview Amusement Park - Des Moines, IA
Posted by: Groundspeak Regular Member wildernessmama
N 41° 37.302 W 093° 37.590
15T E 447808 N 4607964
Quick Description: Nostalgia is the first thing that comes to mind when visiting the grounds of the former Riverview Amusement Park.
Location: Iowa, United States
Date Posted: 6/1/2011 9:23:30 AM
Waymark Code: WMBM5Z
Published By: Groundspeak Regular Member the federation
Views: 5

Long Description:
Nostalgia is the first thing that comes to mind when visiting the grounds of the former Riverview Amusement Park. The area started as a zoological garden in 1915 and eventually developed into a popular entertainment park in the following years. For 63 years it held opportunities for family fun that are now only fond memories and photos in family albums.

Built on the “island” in the oxbow waterway of the Des Moines River the park offered a filtered swimming pool in the 1920’s and a ballroom with a wooden floor where dance bands entertained in the 30’s and 40’s. Amusement rides were added over the years including a ferris wheel, roller coaster, wild mouse, shoot the chutes, carousel, trains, chill thrill, fun house, miniature golf course, kiddie rides of all kinds, mirror maze, haunted house, scrambler, bump cars, and a game arcade just to name a few. Boat rides in the lagoon and eating establishments were also available. The annual fireworks display on Independence Day was well attended until the park closed in 1978.

Riverview Park suffered a major fire in 1933 but went on to rebuild and offer entertainment to the public. Some other features were organ grinders, magicians, fortune tellers, beauty pageants, skydiving events, hydro plane boat races, airplane races, and circus and zoo animal exhibits.

In 1977 the park experienced a 20% cut in attendance, primarily because of rising gas prices and the recent opening of Adventureland in nearby Altoona. The following year Riverview closed its doors and sold many of its rides to Adventureland.

After sitting empty for 25 years, the park is now known as Kiwanis Riverview Nature Island Park, offering two gazebos for picnics, a bridge across the wetlands, and fishing opportunities along the banks of the river. It remains a nice little green space where city residents can still get away from the rat-race and find a much more low key form of entertainment.

More information and some great videos can be found at (visit link)
Date Park Opened: 6/1/1915

Date Park Closed: 10/1/1878

Address:
Corning Avenue
Des Moines, IA USA
50309


Current Use or Function:
Kiwanis Riverview Nature Island Park


Is the park still there?: No

If not, what is in its place now?:
Kiwanis Riverview Nature Island Park


Visit Instructions:
You must post at least one original picture at the posted coords to post a visit log for this waymark. Extra points if you are in the spirit of the park (i.e., in costume, etc.).
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Recent Visits/Logs:
Date Logged Log User Rating  
biscuitt bunch visited Riverview Amusement Park - Des Moines, IA 7/27/2011 biscuitt bunch visited it