January 21, 2002
Lunenburg, MA – Enthusiasts, locals and the public are being asked to help save Whalom Park from possible destruction. A public campaign has been started online to help save the 108-year-old park from the auction block.
Whalom Park, opened in 1893 as the playground for Central New England. Unfortunately the fun ended when the park closed at end of the 2000 season and was put up for sale by its current owners.
Since then the park has been eyed by local developers as a potential site for new housing. With Whalom's future uncertain, one family is attempting to save the park to preserve it for future generations.
The Bowen family who had controlling interest in the park from 1935 to the late 1990's is leading a group of private investors in attempt to purchase the park and preserve it as a classic amusement park.
"There is a viable and immediate solution to save Whalom Park," said Allyson Bowen, who is one of the family members leading the effort to save the park. "Whalom Park will keep the nostalgia, the fun and the thrills alive, but in order to reach an agreement to buy the park from the current owners, we must make a better offer than any developer."
Through a new web site www.savewhalompark.com the family has started a campaign to save the park. On the site the Bowen family has begun to sell "Whales" in an effort to gain widespread support from the community.
"In addition to the monetary support of our investors, we need the widespread commitment of the community," said Bowen. "If we are going to beat an offer from a developer at the negotiation table, we need to have the resources behind us."
The Whales are being sold for $50 each and for every one you purchase, you receive free general admission to the park for the entire year and 25% off a season pass for the next operating season. Bowen hopes that people will come to buy one or a dozen Whales to show their support.
"There's no risk in participating," according to Bowen. "If we can't beat the developers bid, you get your money back. The only risk is not doing anything."
Since 1893 Whalom Park has been the playground of Central New England. Locals have many fond memories of summers spent at the park, working or playing on the roller coaster, the whip or the beach. The hope is to save it for tomorrows children to enjoy.
Those interested in helping to save Whalom Park should visit www.savewhalompark.com for further information.