Created By: Marist College
From this spot, if you were to look to you left, You would see today the New Gartland building and the northern athletic field. almost 70 years ago, this area would have been home to an amusement park called the Woodcliff pleasure park. The Woodcliff Pleasure Park was an amusement park owned and operated by Fred H. Ponty, a real-estate developer. The pleasure park had many carnivals rides like bumper cars and love boats, but the crowning jewel of it all was the rollercoaster known as the Blue Streak. This roller coaster was one of the most thrilling coasters on the east coast. It was constructed by the same designer, Vernon Keenan, who also built the Cyclone on Coney Island. Many people would make the journey up the Hudson River to come to the pleasure park and have an enjoyable day with their families.
In August of 1941, 3,000 African American on a day liner from NYC started to protest their treatment in the par. This protest would lead to extensive damage to the park and a large community backlash against the African Americans. In the end, due to the extensive damages caused by the uprisings, the park closed for repairs and was never reopened due to the public reaction to the rioters. The park may have done this because of WWII and the need to supply the war effort or it may have been because of the projected loss of revenue from people visiting from New York City. The famous Blue Streak was dismantled in 1942 and had its steal donated to the war effort to be used in the construction of the tools of war the United States needed to fight in WWII.
This point of interest is part of the tour: Fern Tor Tour