Today's installment of Throwback Thursday takes us to the northeast corner of W. 17th Avenue and Hendricks street.
In the mid-1950s, Carl Wanasek was principal of Reno Elementary School and his wife, Isobel, was a kindergarten teacher. They bought land at 17th and Hendricks and built their home there. With plenty of acreage left, they sought ideas on what to do with the rest of it.
In 1958, Clowntown was born. Rides included a miniature train, Jeep ride, pony rides, Ferris wheel, plane ride, roller coaster and miniature golf. I had my 7th birthday party there.
In 1974, the Wanaseks sold the park to Len & Billie Railsback who continued the operation until 1982. The time needed and insurance concerns caused the demise of Clowntown. The property was sold for housing development.
All that is left of the park today at 1440 W. 17th is the old railroad tunnel. The property is currently owned by Mill Creek Development LLC.