CANFIELD, Ohio – The Idora Park Experience has scheduled two weekends when the museum will be open to the public – for the first time in two years – and will feature several newly acquired items.
The days will be June 26-27 and July 1-4, from noon to 6 p.m. each day. Admission is $7.50 (free for children 12 and under). Discount tickets ($6.50) to visit on any of the upcoming open dates are available for a limited time at TheIdoraParkExperience.com.
The museum at 4450 S. Turner Road houses and displays artifacts from the defunct Idora Park, an amusement park that existed on Youngstown’s south side from 1899 to 1984.
Jim and Toni Amey own and operate the facility. Their mission is to find, rescue, restore and share pieces of the park to keep its memory alive. While the pandemic prevented the museum from opening for the past 15 months, the Ameys spent the time adding to their collection.
“We’ve added so much since the last opening that it’s hard to keep track of it all,” said Jim Amey. “There’s the cashier’s cage and several original games from the arcade, and thanks to our friend and favorite electrician, Larry Cadman, most of them work and some give real prizes if you win.”
The museum has also added Laffin’ Lena, the jolly animatronic woman from the Fun House, and also Porky, the park’s trash-eating pig.
“I think people are going to go crazy feeding Porky the Paper Eater again,” said Jim. “It’s been 37 years since anyone has seen or heard from him. We have the original sounds and voice tracks too.”
A suction was used to swallow trash placed near Porky’s mouth. Jim said that the museum will provide paper trash for kids of all ages to feed Porky and their other new addition, “Ol’ Biter” – a paper-eating shark.
Ol’ Biter is modeled after a character in the Ameys’ newest book “Nucked! Misadventures with the Idora Park Experience Ninjas.”
Toni Amey says the book is a memoir that describes how she and her husband got started creating their Idora Park collection and museum. It will be available to purchase at the museum, and also from its website and at area book stores.
The book explains “how we acquired, or in some cases didn’t acquire, some of the larger artifacts in the museum,” she said.
Jim said he and his wife used the downtime of the pandemic to improve, expand and get the word out about the Idora Park Experience.
“We think it’s working,” he said. “We’ve sold tickets to people as far away as California, Arizona, Texas, Florida and Georgia. Several people have told us they have planned their first vacation in two years specifically to be here when the Idora Park Experience is open.”
For the latest news on The Idora Park Experience, follow The Idora Park Experience on Facebook.
Pictured: Porky the Paper-Eater, which once graced the midway of Idora Park, has been acquired and restored to working order. It will be on display during the upcoming open dates of The Idora Park Experience.
Copyright 2021, AfterHoursYoungstown, Youngstown, Ohio.
Posted June 16, 2021.