Cotton Candy, Carousels, and Coasters

by Heather Tiger

There’s something about cotton candy, an old-fashioned carousel, and kiddie rides that rouse nostalgia and have us longing for simpler times.

If you take a short trip up US-75 N, you’ll find the Bartlesville Kiddie Park and a heaping dose of nostalgia combined with a fun-filled family evening.  The Kiddie Park has been in operation since 1947, bringing families laughter, amusement, and inexpensive entertainment. You can read about their history and see vintage photos of the park on their website at www.kiddiepark.net.

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My husband and I recently discovered this long-time and somewhat hidden gem of the 918 and took our two boys, ages 6 & 4, for an adventure during our stay-cation.  For $22 our boys rode 15 of the 17 rides, and we shared two bags of cotton candy and still had a few tickets leftover. Just a heads up that our 6 year-old was almost too tall for a couple of rides, so the park is ideal for 3–6 year olds.  If you’ve been to Incredible Pizza lately, you know that’s cheap!  As someone whose husband despises state fairs basically because of the cost, this was a much better option to let our kids make memories riding the same kind of low-tech but high-fun rides that I experienced growing up.  At just .50 a ticket and one ticket per ride, this is an affordable way to take a trip down memory lane.

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The park has 17 classic rides to choose from, including a ride-on train that circles the park, Red Baron planes, a mini-ferris wheel, a roller coaster, bumper cars, and, of course, a carousel.  They even have a sprinkler tunnel to cool-off under!

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The park is open seasonally in the evenings, beginning the first Friday in May and ending the last Saturday in August. The park is open Tuesday through Saturday for the summer until one week before the start of school.  Park hours are Tuesday–Thursday, 7:00 p.m.–9:30 p.m. and Friday and Saturday, 7:00 p.m.–10:00 p.m.

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There is still time to head out and have some family fun before the kids start school!  It’s worth the half tank of gas and bearing the heat.

Heather Tiger is a pastor’s wife and loves being a boymom to two tiger cubs. She can be found reading, binging Netflix, or inspiring and unleashing creativity in others. Check out her Instagram, @tunemyheartcreative to see some of the ways she utilizes God’s creative gifts to encourage others. She also loves cotton candy on a carousel!

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