Everyone who has grown up with childhood summer trips to Rye’s Playland Park has a favorite attraction: the Dragon Coaster, the Ferris wheel, the haunted house, Starship 2000 or that came where you squirt water into a tiny ceramic clown’s mouth (don’t judge us). That’s why so many were saddened but understanding this year, as Westchester County was forced by the COVID-19 pandemic to keep the park closed through the summer season.
Luckily, the county also took this opportunity to make some much-needed improvements to the historic amusement park.
“Restoration of the Historic Carousel horses and building are currently underway and expected to reopen in 2021,” says First Deputy Commissioner of Westchester County Parks, Recreation & Conservation Peter Tartaglia. The vintage attractions has been closed since 2017, when a fire badly damaged parts of the historic building.
If you haven’t seen Playland from this vantage before, you won’t be alone. Local photographer J.J. Cady snapped these shots from the park’s seldom seen in recent years North Boardwalk. While the Southern Boardwalk — repaired and reopened in 2013 — sustained damage from the tidal surges and heavy winds of Superstorm Sandy in 2012, the Northern Boardwalk was completely demolished, taking years to rebuild.
Upgraded with steel piles and a concrete substructure to last over 30 years without warping and through centuries of storms, the replenished boardwalk was finally reopened in 2018 with historically accurate benches and now once again completes the scenic Seaside Walk that runs for three-fourths of a mile from Playland Lake to the Southern Boardwalk.
Keep scrolling for even more nostalgic views of Playland, to tide yourself over until next summer.