To the editor:
I have lived in Brownwood about 36 years now. I have been told about lots of things that existed “before my time” of coming to this great community. One has really sparked my interest and I am hopeful that you will publish this letter to see if anyone has any information with regard to it.
I have been told by several people that there was, at one time, a type of carnival that operated in the Riverside Park area. One gentleman said that he can remember riding the little train all the way around the park for “one thin dime.” He also said that there was a concession stand and several other rides to entertain the younger crowd. He specifically remembers “the basket ride” that had about four baskets that went around in a circle like a ferris wheel, but not near that big. He also cited that as a child, he can remember people taking pictures of their kids in this area. He said the supports for some of the equipment were still in the left hand corner of the park as you went in. Another person told me there was just the train. If what people have told me is correct, these activities took place in the late 1940s and early ’50s. It was also suggested to me that the Brownwood Bulletin might have something in the way of advertisement for this in the newspaper way back when.
As of this date, I have come to nothing but dead ends trying to find out information or finding pictures. I see so many “landmarks” disappearing from Brownwood as it grows and my own grandchildren will never know anything about the miniature golf course on Highway 377 when it was a thriving operation, or the Bowie theatre, or the original Underwood’s Cafeteria or many more.
I think this would make a most interesting project for the Brownwood Bulletin to bring a story about the Riverside Park and its history. I go there to walk quite often and have get- togethers there with my family occasionally, but other than that, I know nothing about it.
Is there anybody out there that would care to share some memories?