Shine up that brass ring and tilt that whirl — Kiddie Park is back (almost). After a somewhat tumultuous few months, the iconic children's amusement park will reopen at the San Antonio Zoo on October 18, a slight delay from its original projection of August.
All of the attractions San Antonians know and love will be there, including the carousel, school bus, and one-seater airplanes. Park access will be included with the price of admission to the zoo, though those who just want to visit Kiddie Park can pay a separate entry fee.
“We are working diligently to ensure that this iconic children’s amusement park feels as much like it did at its Broadway location and that it will more than meet the expectations of past, present, and future Kiddie Park visitors,” said Tim Morrow, president and CEO of the San Antonio Zoo, in a September 4 news release. “Funds generated from the operation of Kiddie Park will go to support the San Antonio Zoo's mission.”
Earlier this year, the 100-year-old Kiddie Park, believed to be the oldest children's amusement park in the U.S., was facing an uncertain future. Plagued by low attendance, attributed in part to development and a lack of parking, the amusement park announced it was moving from its original home near the corner of Broadway and Mulberry streets to a spot in the San Antonio Zoo near the banks of the San Antonio River.
After receiving pushback from the Brackenridge Park Conservancy, however, the zoo then announced it was moving the park further inland away from the river. The decision was applauded by the conservancy in a June statement.
"The new location mitigates concerns about the impact the original location would have had on the park, particularly on a tranquil area along the banks of the San Antonio River," the conservancy said at the time.
To help draw visitors to the treasured landmark, the zoo is doubling parking, including the construction of a new garage near Kiddie Park, according to a news release.